The 7 Different Forms of Rest and Why They are Crucial for Health.

Hello everyone. Welcome back to my blog – Let’s talk health with Mairi! I hope you are all having a wonderful week. This week has been a bit hectic for me, but what’s new! This week I uploaded a podcast on this topic – the seven different forms of rest and why they are essential for your health. I will add the link at the end of the blog post if you prefer to listen. WAIT! Before you go there, read this blog post and let me know your thoughts on rest. Is it important to you? Have you realised you needed more rest? Did you know that there were seven different types of essential rest?! It’s crazy right? Let me know what you think 🙂

Rest is critically important, yet largely undermined in today’s society and research. For some reason we don’t delve into the phenomenon of rest all that often and I want to change that! If you read last week’s blog post you would know that I needed some rest, probably all seven of the different kinds of rest. I am here alongside you all, rest is something I must work on. Writing this blog post and recording the podcast was a way for me to educate and inspire myself to rest more, especially before it’s too late, and to relay all this information to you all! I get really demotivated when I am overwhelmed and overworked (you know this). Check out last week’s blog post for more and for lots of pictures.

I have a hard time realising when an emotion is getting on top of me, or when I am stressed. I would say I am always quite steady and happy; I always feel motivated and passionate. However, when I don’t, there’s something quite wrong with me and I am probably in need of some rest. Can you relate?

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Let’s talk about the seven different kinds of rest and why they are important!

1. Physical Rest

Physical rest refers to resting the body. Sitting down, relaxing after a long day or after an exercise session. Following exercise, rest is very important. Rest and recovery is critical for the body to grow, repair and renew after a workout. Overtraining is a common symptom of not taking adequate rest, and it can be quite problematic. The good news is, that many of us are not lacking in this department. We rest (physically) far too much. We know that we aren’t active enough. I would bet that you get enough physical rest. Only a small proportion of the population overtrain and if you are one of those people, try to evaluate the reasoning behind why you may exercise too much and try and create a strategy that builds more rest into your routine. Your body will thank you.

2. Mental Rest

Now, this is a different ball game. We as a society do not get much mental rest. We are constantly stimulated by work, stress, people, social media and very rarely have any time to sit, reflect and relax mentally. Without mental rest we become agitated and irritable and ultimately this may have a more sinister outcome. I would recommend that you take some time each day to reflect and focus your attention inwards. Try meditation and journaling or simply reading a book may give you a little mental rest. Scrolling on social media is certainly not the way to go about this. Although it feels like you are resting, social media is mentally stimulating.

3. Sensory Rest

Sensory rest is very important, especially at night. This refers to conversations, screens, bring lights, background noise. Our sensory functions need to rest. Sleep is a big one for all the seven different kinds of rest and if you take anything from this blog post, please let it be to get enough sleep (8-9 hours). Check below, I have linked a podcast episode on sleep (it is fascinating even if I do say so myself). It will shock you how important sleep is for your wellbeing.

At night, try to avoid bright lights and screens. You can add night mode to your phone and laptop which will dull your screen and remove the blue light. This will help your sleep and improve rest.

4. Creative Rest

You know when you hit a wall creatively? Yeah, that one. To avoid that, take some breaks from creative tasks, especially if you are creative for your job. Your job and mind will thank you. Go for a walk or try something academic.

5. Emotional Rest

Feel your emotions, if not, you will be hit with emotional exhaustion. Like mental rest, we don’t get enough emotional rest. Find some time and space where you can communicate your true feelings without fear of judgement, this may be with loved ones, but I suspect for many of us journaling our emotions may be easier. Please start a journal. It is a fantastic outlet for emotional release and prevents emotional exhaustion. Feeling your emotions is critical for your mental and physical health. Try meditation and yoga, and please, journal!

6. Social Rest

We all need a break from people at some point. Some people need more social rest than others. It is highly variable between people especially in those who are introverted. Extroverts may need less social rest. Take some time alone every once in a while, especially if you feel you need it.

7. Spiritual Rest

Everyone needs to connect in some way to their spirituality. Yoga, meditation and journaling is another important one for spiritual rest. Look within and connect with the essence of you. Look to the moon and appreciate its power. Don’t be afraid to be spiritual!

Each one of the seven forms of rest will vary dependant on who you are and what your needs are. Sit down with a journal and write down all 7 different types of rest. Evaluate which rest you think you get enough of and which you think you need more of. Write a strategy to ensure you are getting all 7. We can work on getting enough rest together 🙂

Sleep podcast!
Rest podcast!

Thank you for listening.

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