7 types of rest

Feeling burnt out? All you need to know about the 7 kinds of rest

Burnout has an antidote – rest! Not only physical rest, you need to take many kinds of rest to spring back to your best form.

We hear the term burnout a lot these days. Our friend who overworked to meet a tight deadline might have said it. Our brother who works two jobs to make ends meet might have said it. Burnout is for real as we negotiate burgeoning work and a diminishing work life balance. Escalating stress and anxiety leads to burnout if adequate rest is not taken between all that work. We get exhausted socially, creatively and in so many other ways, even though most people only know about physical exhaustion. And the important part is that we need to recover from all these exhaustions to regain our productivity as well as calm and composure.

Are you among those who feel deprived of energy after working very hard for a while? Do you feel unable to connect with your work at hand after weeks of hustling? These are signs that you should never ignore. Not just at work, burnout tends to engulf one’s social and family life as well, if not addressed on time. Do note that it is not a workout or fitness regime where you lose fat but the positive energy of life that gets drained out.

Burnout is typically a workplace-related effect but can also be caused by clinging onto negativity or allowing cynicism to develop within. When your stress levels keep rising due to meeting timelines or juggling different sets of priorities, without yielding any benefits at times, it can be exhaustive at a physical and emotional level. In most cases of burnout, the common cause is a lack of adequate rest. Rest is a way your body asserts itself to heal, repair and rejuvenate naturally. So if you find these 7 types of signs – of forgetfulness, difficulty in maintaining relationships, irritability and unexplained muscular tension, then these 7 types of rests are a must for you.

Soulveda shares how to reclaim a relaxed and well-rested you and protect you from a burnout.

Physical rest

Adequate physical rest ensures that one’s stress hormones are eased out, releasing tension and calming the whole body. This rest can be of a stationary type – without moving one’s body like sleeping or taking a nap. A high-quality sleep acts as a natural replenishment to the human body. Physically, sleep helps repair damages and prepares your body for life functions for the following day.

Another type of physical rest comprises of movements – yoga, body stretching and ergonomically comforting seating postures. Grouped as a non-stationary type, this is equally good and beneficial as it induces body hormones, soothes nerves and releases tension in the muscles. Try and make both types of physical rest a genuine friend of yours to save yourself from a burnout.

Mental rest

Are you not able to control the constant chain of thoughts swirling in your brain when trying hard to sleep or even while awake? Then you need rest of different kind. Mental rest is essentially a practice of switching off your brain and freeing your mind from the constant chatter.

To cut out the annoying noise that keeps one up and causes mental fatigue, one needs to embrace cerebral stillness and quietness of mind. Start by disciplining yourself to take short breaks and practice deep breaths. Or free mind space by noting down things. Consciously remind yourself to slow down and disconnect your mind from attention seeking demands. The aim is to run on default mode until the brain fog clears up.

Sensory rest 

The five senses that humans have are crucial to lead a life that is safe from hazards that the brain perceives as danger. The senses of touch, sight, hearing, smell and taste receive and transfer information for and to the brain for timely responses and life navigation. Akin to information overload from the internet, the brain too gets burdened with sensory inputs like digital screens, vehicular pollution and mobile phone notifications.

Sensory rest can be taken by doing things like simply closing your eyes, accessing digital devices only at specific intervals and practicing meditation. This helps detox the senses and prevents over stimulation. Purposefully preventing sensory inputs daily for sometime can reduce your anxiety and calm yourself to the core.

Creative rest

The fourth of the seven types of rest is the creative rest. Are you stuck with no proper solutions to your current problems? Are you not able to find innovative solutions or new ideas? A lot of us go through such stalemate. The cure is some creative rest. Without it, you feel stuck and cannot think out of the ordinary.

To get this type of rest, immerse yourself in an activity which you love to do; like a walk in the park simply enjoying the beauty of nature or indulging in performing arts. Maybe act like a child and enjoy some moments of pure joy without any competitive pressure. Doing so will allow your mind to feel excited while staying motivated. This will result in your imagination getting that needed push to take wings, thereby producing great results.

With the kind of competition and societal pressure we face, creative rest is essential to open our minds and broaden our perspectives, leading to brainstorming better and refilling our lives with creative energy.

Spiritual rest

Who am I? What is my self-worth? Does anybody bother about me? If these thoughts come to you, it shows you are feeling disconnected from the world and leading a life with no purpose. Take some spiritual rest to reconnect and elevate your existence to an optimum. Align yourself with a holistic goal, take active part in things meaningful to you, engage in socially useful activities to pay back to the humanity. A prayer, individually or in community, helps restore one’s faith in a greater purpose. Spiritual rest also strengthens one’s belief system to live a life less ordinary.

Remember that even if you are successful, you need the warmth of human beings, love and affection that convey to you their acceptance. Spiritual rest helps you find that connection time and again.

Emotional rest

Are you feeling choked emotionally? Not able to share feelings or express yourself freely? Chances are, you are stuck in an emotional jam. This can cause stress and make you irritable, even angry without logic sometimes. A feeling of helplessness sets in and drains you. If this happens, learn to say ‘No’ to things you are not able to do, be at ease and find a safe place to express your feelings.

You can start by writing a journal and looking for a trusted friend with whom you can express your sorrow or negative emotions. Also, you can try practicing mindfulness by becoming aware of your own feelings and accepting them so that you are able to stay calm and live in the present.

Emotional rest brings your real self out and enables you to stay authentic and true to yourself, so that you do not suffer from emotional labour.

Social rest

Humans are social animals; they like to stay together and prosper in life. It is an irony then that some relationships, family members or even friends can drain a person and take away a major share of the social energy that the individual has to offer. Social burnout highlights the negative carry value of any relationship that expunges our very own life energy.

So if you are finding it difficult to find ‘me time’ to reflect upon and revitalise yourself, learn to say no to social events that your heart doesnt agree with. Spend more time with people with whom you enjoy and feel refreshed. Give more importance to those relationships which refresh instead of exhaust you. You can even change your hangout place or simply switch off your mobile when with people who are supportive and make you feel good, for that much needed social rest.

Rest is essential and it is important to know which one to choose at what time to prosper in life. Our wellbeing directly depends not only on the work we do, but also on the appropriate breaks we take. Identifying and applying these 7 types of rest go a long way in making our lives successful.




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