Why You Need a Retreat
Press pause to find healing for your body, mind and soul.
Brené Brown's recent announcement that she and her team are taking a sabbatical really struck a chord with me. The constant challenges of the last two years have taught me that my need to rest and recover is non-negotiable. And while a sabbatical is out of the question for me right now, I know that I need to prioritize building in time to reset and recharge—to make a habit of taking a pause.
"The power of taking pause is well researched. Not only does pausing promote relaxation, a break from noise and doing it also refreshes and reenergizes you for hours. Taking time to just be still and quiet gives your nervous system a chance to regain balance." ~Cara Bradley
Last summer, my nervous system was on overload. It felt like I was having an anxiety attack 24/7. I'd wake up in a panic. I wouldn't be able to fall asleep because my heart was racing. My thoughts were scattered and I had trouble focusing. Luckily I was able to rebalance my nervous system through meditation, mindfulness practices and, most importantly, the act of taking a pause.
In order to give myself permission to pause, I had to acknowledge what was realistic. These acknowledgments have made all the difference in honoring myself with what I need.
Yes, making peace with the unrealistic expectation that I "need" to get everything done immediately is the hardest step. It is also the most crucial.
Leaving things undone can be:
As women, we continually take on more and more and that's usually when we start to lose ourselves. I experienced it first hand in my marriage and again when Mason came to live with me – it's been almost five years and I'm just now starting to get my footing and find myself again.
Taking a pause doesn't look the same for everyone, and there's no set time frame. Try to limit the phone use during your pause.
A pause is NOT: doing laundry, shopping, vacuuming or scrolling endlessly on social media. I believe thats called "stresslaxing" and it most certainly is not relaxing. In order to make self-care a priority - you must delegate, prioritize, make peace with leaving things undone and intentionally choose moments in your life to press pause on all that's going on around you.
Now, I recognize taking a pause is crucial to maintaining my mental, emotional and physical health. Some ways that I pause are:
I'll say it again because it was hard for me: give yourself permission to leave things undone and pause. When you unpause, you will discover everything you need to do is still waiting for you.