Burnout prevention; The 7 types of rest everyone needs.

Have you ever woken up after a full eight hours of sleep feeling just as exhausted as you were when your head hit the pillow? 

Following an intense, daily routine can start taking its toll on different aspects of your life, we all have those moments at work or whilst studying when we feel that we can no longer handle it and are on the verge of breakdown, nevertheless you still push through and fight it off and that in itself proves your strength however you shouldn’t dismiss them as it is probably a sign of burnout.

Rest isn’t just about relaxing on the weekend. In order to truly replenish our energy, we need to schedule the right kind of restorative activities into our day.

According to Dr Saundra Dalton-Smith there are seven types of rest.

Which one do you need the most right now?

  1. Physical rest: Relieving your body of physical stress, such as muscle tension, headaches, and a lack of sleep. This could be passive physical rest (sleeping or napping) or active physical rest (yoga or massage)
  2. Social rest: spending time with people who don’t need anything from you, where you just enjoy each others company: if you ever find yourself saying ‘can I just get a moment for me?’ you might need to spend some time around ‘like-giving’ people, rather than people who are draining from your social energy.
  3. Emotional rest: authentically expressing your feelings and eliminating people-pleasing behaviours. If you feel like you always have to keep your emotions in check or if you’re carrying  lot of the ‘emotional labour’ it might be time for you to truly express what you’re feeling and prioritise your emotional needs above others.
  4. Spiritual rest: Connecting with something larger than yourself: if you're religious, this might mean practising your religion or going to the church or mosque. If not, it might mean engaging with something which gives you a sense of purpose. Sometimes sharing your burdens with something that is larger than yourself helps shift the stress. Whether that’s through religion, or community (e.g. Volunteering) where you feel like what you do matters.
  5. Sensory rest: The opportunity to give your senses a break (e.g. from technology , bright lights and loud noises). Whether or not you are consciously aware of this sensory input around you, your body is going to. People who need sensory rest may find that they feel good at the beginning of the day, but can’t understand why at the end of the day they’re so agitated or irritable.
  6. Creative rest: Exposing yourself to inspiring environments, without feeling the need to produce a creation. Creative rest is about reawakening the awe and wonder inside each of us- this an be anything that helps you to feel inspires, like doing a creative hobby, going to an art gallery or being around nature.
Mental rest: Giving your brain a break from the ‘inner-chatter’ or from thinking or focusing too hard. If you find it hard to sleep at night because your mind is racing it might be time to plan some activities that give your brain a break- meditation, a tech-free walk, or a body scan can all improve your mental stamina.

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