Unlike what the world tells us – our actions always come with a cost. The world says we can have it all and be everything to everyone but the reality is our energy is a commodity that can run out.
When we say yes to something it costs us our energy, and we only have so much.
We draw our energy from different buckets…
- As a mom, caring for my kids costs me my physical and sensory energy.
- Listening to my friends and responding with empathy costs me emotional and social energy.
- Making decisions in parenting costs me mental and emotional energy.
- Being ready to talk with my husband and recap his day after work takes emotional and social energy.
However, just because it costs me energy doesn’t make the action a bad one.
It’s simply a reality I need to acknowledge.
If our actions come at a cost, then the purpose of rest must be to restore our depleted energy buckets. And in order to fill something up, we must stop and pour something into it.
Stopping takes intention. Stopping has purpose. Zoning out, numbing out and escaping seem more like a reaction…more like avoiding.
I can’t fill up the buckets if I run right past them.
So what fills up my depleted buckets?
- Sitting in quiet restores my depleted and overwhelmed senses and gives me the time to respond to life instead of react.
- Reading my Bible and reflecting on Scripture re-centers my heart and restores my mind.
- Taking a walk outdoors restores my physical body and the silence gives me energy to show up for my friends.
- Taking a deep breath while doing dishes at the sink and saying 2 things I’m grateful for fills my heart.
- A quick journaling session where I write down my thoughts and ask the Lord for guidance restores my heart and mind.
- Time with girlfriends where we intentionally talk about our lives and where we see God moving energizes and inspires my heart and soul.
- Date nights with my hubby, where we intentionally focus on each other in our conversation (doing our best to avoid talking about our kids) refuels my heart and energizes our connection.
When I intentionally re-fuel depleted parts of myself, I replace my frenzied and overwhelmed perspective with a new perspective.
Breath, stillness, a quiet heart and listening ears create a space for me to hear the Lord’s voice. The Lord’s perspective is always broader, deeper and more peaceful than mine.
So what is rest?
intentionally creating space to refill my energy buckets….regularly.
We must choose to pause and set down the “to-do” lists, the projects and our problems. We fill up our buckets with things that bring us delight and allow our souls to exhale.
For me it’s stillness, presence and reflection.
Rest must be chosen and practiced…daily, weekly, monthly. Yes, practiced.
Rest won’t happen by mistake, though zoning out will! And we can’t count on a vacation every 2 years to restore all the areas of our lives that have been depleted.
So here’s to the practice of rest. May we name it and choose it regularly.
I’d love to hear what refills your energy buckets. Let’s share with each other in the comments and learn some new ways to fill our buckets!