Athletes all know about the importance of rest as a part of their training regimen. Some maybe know this more than others, but rest is of the utmost importance when you’re trying to to compete. Even if you’re not an athlete, rest is necessary for the body to repair itself, heal injury, fight illness and recover from the stress of life.
I don’t consider myself an athlete, but I do exercise on a regular basis and do my best to stay healthy. As a result, one of my interests is health and fitness, I spend a good amount of time reading and researching on that topic. One article I read recently really had a great impact on me as it relates to rest and totally caught me off guard. For most people when our muscles are sore, we rest, stretch, get a massage or use massage tools, eat protein and do any number of other things to get our bodies back to full speed – but what about your heart?
Your heart is a muscle too and perhaps the most important muscle of all. Without a heart you simply cannot live. So what happens when you perform a really hard work out? Your heart gets a work out too! But how many of us really think about giving our heart a rest?
We think about other muscles, but not the heart.
We go to the gym to get in our “cardio,” and after a hard work out you go sit on the couch, go to bed or do any number of things for pretty much every other muscle in your body but not your heart.
You can’t necessarily do those things for your heart. Your heart is always working and we should be thankful for that fact! The article I read didn’t have any mind-blowing information, so I guess it was just the timing and the way I read it – give your heart a rest.
But that’s not all folks….what about your other heart? Your emotional heart? Your soul? Your essence?
What are you doing to give that heart a rest?
I would argue that you should give your emotional heart a rest just as much as your physical heart. But how do you do that, you might ask? Well, one way to do that is to surround yourself with people who care about you. Develop healthy, positive relationships. Be a good friend and listener to others so that when you need them, they’re there for you. I never took this for granted, but the older I get the more I realize the true currency in this world is the time we spend with others and what that does for us and them.
You can give your heart a rest with family members. You can give your heart a rest with friends. It doesn’t matter who, all that matters is that you do. Don’t get me wrong – it’s hard. It’s scary. It’s difficult. It makes you feel vulnerable. Afraid. Nervous. Anxious.
Yes, sharing who you are with others makes you feel all those feelings and more, but the feeling of being able to rest your heart when you need to is priceless and worth all of those other feelings. I’m working on this and feel those same things, but I will say that it gets a little bit easier the more you do it and the easier it gets, the more you can both give and receive to those you hold dear.
Now let’s take this a step further. Your spiritual heart. Are you giving that heart a rest? I’ll leave you with a quote from St. Augustine’s Confessions
“You have made us for yourself, O Lord, and our heart is restless until it rests in you.”
I hope you’re able to find whatever it is you’re looking for and someone to share it with. Here’s to giving your heart some rest.
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