Regardless of how you feel about organized religion, there may be one tradition that you’d like to revive. A day of rest can spread happiness and peace.
Years ago, many communities practically shut down or at least slowed their pace one day a week. Today, you may feel tired and overwhelmed because your weekends are just as busy as the rest of your week.
Create your own rituals to help you deal with stress and accomplish your goals. Start with these tips for designing a weekly day of rest.
Benefits of a Weekly Day of Rest:
1. Strengthen your immune system. Adequate rest and sleep reduce inflammation and other effects of chronic stress. That can lower your risk for heart conditions and other issues. Sleep is especially important, so your body can produce sufficient numbers of immune cells called cytokines.
2. Manage your weight. Relaxing also causes hormonal changes that help fight weight gain. Keep in mind that you still need to eat healthy and exercise.
3. Gain more energy. Are you feeling sluggish and drained? Refresh yourself with regular breaks instead of consuming too much caffeine.
4. Increase productivity. Numerous studies show that excess overtime lowers productivity. Leisure time is essential for safeguarding your mental and physical capabilities.
5. Enjoy life more. You’ll feel more alive after you take a day off. Return to your routines with less stress and more enthusiasm.
Things to Do on Your Weekly Day of Rest:
1. Eat breakfast. Start your day with a nutritious meal like an omelet with vegetables or a bean burrito. Keep your menu for the rest of the day simple unless you enjoy spending time in the kitchen.
2. Take a nap. One out of three adults are sleep deprived, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Catch up with a nap as long as it doesn’t disrupt your nighttime sleep. As a general rule, try to lie down around noon for about 20 to 30 minutes.
3. Play around. Low intensity exercise is great for a day of active rest. Do something fun like riding your bike or playing bocce ball in your backyard.
4. Go outside. Enjoy anything that takes you outdoors to appreciate nature. Do some light work in your garden. Watch the ducks swimming at your local park. Sit on your patio and sip a glass of iced tea.
5. Express your creativity. Relaxation sets your imagination free. Write a short story or draw a picture. Make popsicle stick crafts with your kids or buy child and adult coloring books that you can work on side by side.
6. Read a book. Settle down with an intriguing mystery or a classic novel. Expand your knowledge with a bestselling biography or history book.
7. Listen to music. Play music in the background or close your eyes and give it your full attention. Enjoy your favorite genres or try something new. Feel free to sing and dance along.
8. Get a hobby. Work on your hobby or find a pastime that you’ll be able to develop over the years to challenge your skills or soothe your feelings. Pick something that’s appropriate for your budget and interests.
9. Connect with others. Hang out with family and friends. Depending on the conditions in your local area, set up a video call or eat outdoors at a restaurant with a great view. You could also stay home together and play board games.
10. Meditate and pray. Use your day of rest to nurture your spirituality. Engage in quiet contemplation and readings to build your strength and serenity.
Disengage from work and turn off your phone for a while. Treat your body and mind to a day of rest. Doing the minimum one day a week could make the other six days much more rewarding.