A person’s health is affected by the environment, life events, emotions and the physical body. I am always looking for healthy alternatives in my lifestyle. I also analyze how some of our current habits affect our well being. The body is a fascinating subject!

“The greatest wealth is health.”

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God said Sunday is the day of rest, but this week Tuesday was a day of rest for me. So I posted on my Facebook LIKE page and my Facebook Friends page a picture that said:

    Since it is raining
    I’ve been stressed
    I’m tired…
    It’s a stay in my pjs and rest kind of day.

When I glanced out the window before I posted that message, I didn’t have my glasses on. It wasn’t until an hour later that I discovered it wasn’t rain outside, but snow. It was only a light dusting and most of it was icy, but nonetheless, it wasn’t rain. All the more of a reason to take it easy and stay away from crazy people who don’t know how to drive in Virginia.

On January 27, 2015, I told you about Alyssa moving far, far away and just a few days ago on February 9, 2015, I explained what Empty Nest Syndrome is and how it is affecting me. This morning I received a text message from my beautiful daughter that said:

    Just to let you know. Every
    morning I wake up and I’m
    SO happy. I didn’t even know
    it was possible to love life so
    much. I gtg to work. I love you

If you don’t know text shorthand, “gtg” means “got to go.”

2015-02-10 text message from alyssa

It is such a relief to know that she is happy. It would be so awful if Alyssa was depressed and feeling like she had made the wrong decision.

After a very restful day, a fun phone call from Alyssa (notice I said ‘FROM’ which means SHE initiated it) and more texts from her, I feel a little more relaxed. I also took the time to THINK about stuff today, so my mind isn’t so jumbled.

Why Stopping Everything To Rest Is Important

Staying fulling engaged and overactive everyday has detrimental effects on everyone, but I have learned when it is imperative to stop. When I had a full time job, my stopping day was either Saturday or Sunday every week because without that break, the following week would be a mess.

It is common knowledge that resting is as important as sleeping and eating because it:

  • regulates your mood
  • rejuvenates your body and mind
  • is linked to learning and memory function

Without giving yourself time to rest it can negatively affect:

  • your mood
  • immune system
  • ability to cope
  • memory
  • stress level

Society in general is too busy and most people pack their day too full and try to accomplish too many things at one time. Being TOO busy is the new normal, but it is a very unhealthy normal.

The past year has taught me not to do so much multitasking. For instance, I’m often sitting at the computer for hours without any music on and the television is off. All I hear are the snores from Bella or the elements outside the window. It’s peaceful, calm and quiet.

Instead of eating my breakfast in front of the computer like I used to do, I now sit in the recliner or couch and stare out the window with Bella watching every bite I take out of the corner of her eye. Well, she is still a dog even though I treat her like my baby! I’m able to think about the deliciousness of my food instead of looking down at an empty plate without remembering eating any of it because I was so absorbed in the activities on the computer.

I focus on just one task and not only do I enjoy the task more, but everything about me is more peaceful. For instance:

  • I do not speed when I’m driving and therefore I do not care if there are cops on every street corner. There is no anxiety because there is no reason for me to get a ticket.
  • Because I do not speed when I’m driving, I am more of a defensive driver. I leave plenty of room between me and the vehicles in front of me. I brake long before I need to instead of at the last second. I let people cut in front of me ALL the time without going ballistic. I’m just all around a more peaceful driver.
  • I take long showers and THINK about how great the shower feels. I concentrate on shaving slowly. I enjoy washing and conditioning my hair. I use homemade scrubs on my body and face. I pumice my feet so that they remain soft. I let the hot steamy water beat down on me and take away all my tension.
  • I enjoy vacuuming and cleaning. While I’m scrubbing the floor, washing the baseboards, making the faucets shine or getting the dust off the furniture, I think about how blessed I am that I’m so healthy and that I have all my body parts working the way they were intended to work. I remember how my mother taught me to be a good homemaker and how to create a clean, happy and loving home. So instead of thinking that these tasks are drudgery, I’m thankful that I can still perform them for myself and that I have a home.

Besides slowing down and focusing on one task at a time, there is something else you can do to help you rest…

meditate or pray.

Research has shown that both meditation and prayer have some of the same effects on your health. It has been proven that meditation and prayer:

  • changes blood pressure
  • reduces heart rate
  • balances body temperature
  • physically expands and grows a larger frontal lobe in the brain which is where we analyze problems, concentrate and focus
  • physically expands and grows a larger midbrain which controls breathing and blood circulation
  • physically expands and grows a larger dorsolateral prefrontal cortex which controls memory and muscle coordination
  • calms the nervous system so that you no longer sweat the small stuff or the big stuff
  • helps you to live longer

Taking a rest is not a sign of weakness. Actually, allowing yourself the time to stop, relax and rest is quite an intelligent decision.

During this year of waiting while having to listen to the echo of closed doors with their resounding “no, not at this time” and “the position has been filled” and “you’re over qualified for the position so you would be bored if we hired you,” I believe that it has all been for a reason or reasons. There are many things that I would not have been able to do if I had been working this whole time. For instance, I wouldn’t have been able to spend the night with Brittany at the hospital or spend so much time with Alyssa before she moved. Just those two things alone would have been good reasons, right? Yes!

I’ve obviously learned the importance of stopping my mind by stopping my body. By no means do I have the process aced, but I think I’m doing pretty good at least today. Besides, looking at this happy, healthy and beautiful face of my daughter tells me that she’s doing just fine.

I’m so proud of her!

2015-02-03 alyssa first day of work at new job framed

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