You need to rest.
You need to take time to be away.
And that is perfectly OK.
We live in a continuous, no break, rapid need for information world. A fast paced, hurried world where the ‘early’ bird is often the most compensated which supports the concept of continuous work.
However, there is a danger that exists with the concept of never slowing down, resting, or relaxing to recalibrate or refresh one’s focus. In addition, the mindset that equates activities (hurried pace) with progress must be avoided at all cost. To anyone, overwhelmed by the sheer pace (madness) of deadlines and deliverables, I have good news for you.
First, do not panic.
Second, give yourself permission.
Third, go ahead and hit the pause, rest or reset button.
If you practice those steps, you will discover very quickly that: You are your biggest challenge. The greatest obstacle is the individual with the busy schedule, to dos, responsibilities, etc.
Rest provides solitude.
It is during rest that one’s perspective is renewed.
Rest provides a habitat for the soul and mind to ponder, reflect and recalibrate.
The popular psalm 23, highlights the effect of rest and mentions the role of the good shepherd who makes the sheep lie down in green pastures, beside quiet waters where the soul is refreshed.
Rest provides an escape and this quote sufficiently captures my thought.
“In order to have focus, we need to escape to focus.”
— Greg McKeown
The Modem Story
Here’s a brief true story that further highlighted this lesson for me, after numerous attempts to fix my modem a few years ago, I gave in and called the technical support helpline for assistance. It was a call I dreaded because I imagined that the call would be a waste of my time.
Boy, was I so wrong!
This is a fairly simple and common problem, I recalled him stating as he instructed me to turn off the modem, disconnect from the power source, and wait for a few minutes.
That’s it? Seriously??
That got me thinking… If we are being honest, we will all admit that we’ve been at some crossroads on the journey (career, business, family, etc) and the intent, objective or purpose so articulately defined and readily embraced is often a blur.
For my modem, that re-start was the main difference between success and failure (inability to function). Some of the benefits of restarting include allowing the system to catch up, clearing out hung signals, dead and stale traffic.
Do not forget that even ‘reliable’ machines have a maintenance cycle.
So today and beyond, I want to challenge anyone who is uptight, nervous, pent up, stuck, busy, hung-up, overwhelmed, and troubled to give themselves permission to re-start their system. In essence, hit the restart button and clear out the old, stale remnants of yesterday and the dead weights from the failures, delays, disappointments and missed opportunities. So here are three things to do.
This means learning to turn off devices, gadgets, and everything that easily distracts. The physical process of separating from the routine of the day and life.
This is a mental process that engages the mind to slowly unwind. Have a plan and approach for handling distractions such as a simple out of office message or a voice mail directing people during your absence.
THIRD, STEP AWAY
Perhaps the most difficult of the three as it involves a conscious and continuous decision to relax by doing nothing sometimes or something totally unrelated to one’s normal actions such as reading a good book.
Remember, the words of a wise King Solomon who declared the ideal type of rest as being the one that leads to life, contentment and freedom from trouble.
That’s the rest you need.