Rest isn’t always sedentary

Everyone has different forms of rest.

My wife likes to unwind by watching something familiar like The Office or Friends on repeat.
This saps my energy & leaves me feeling lethargic and antsy.
The background laughter track grates and makes my head fizz.
I’ve found over time my tolerance for tv degrading to the point where I struggle to watch anything longer than 30mins without wanting to do something else instead.
I don’t think this is a bad thing.

If I had to define rest as downtime, then my form of rest would be walking or reading.
But this weekend we had a rare spot of sun in Scotland.
I got my pasty white arms out and got stuck in with the garden.
I spent the weekend caked in mud,
digging drainage trenches,
we reroofed the shed,
laid some paving,
Cut up some timber to build a new plant bed.
I should have been exhausted.
And yet this was the most wholesome and restorative weekend I’ve had in ages.
Building things, letting my brain switch off and my body work is a form of rest for me.

I entered the new week stiff and sore, but energised.
My brain felt like it was functioning at a higher level of creativity and output.
I like to repeat this pattern at a micro scale too;

I try to theme my days with mental tasks, follwoed by physical tasks, alternating to rest both respectivley.
Everyone has different forms of rest.
It doesn’t have to be watching tv or vegging out.

Work your mind, then work your body. Then reverse.

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Nicholas Robb

Founder, Design Hero
Author of Life by Design

More tips on stoicism for solopreneurs...

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