Did you see Strictly last night? I find those early shows wonderful and exhausting in equal measure. The bright lights, loud music and all the visual stimulation is so much to process for my brain! How about your brain? Does is cope well with such things or have you been fortunate enough not to have ever even thought about it. Telly is meant to be some kind of relaxation and rest isn’t it? It was such a shock to me because in Lifejoy Towers we often have days when we have a NO TELLY time. It reboots our souls and let’s us recover from the news a little. 

We all need escapism and mental rest. Sometimes they can be congruent and that can generate rejuvenation for the mind and soul. It is easy to confuse relaxation with rest. Often relaxing takes effort. Ask anyone who is beyond exhausted and all they really want is to sleep, not embark upon a hobby. It is mattress over mind! 

One of the recurrent themes with all of my personal and professional experiences is to experience and observe our reluctance to rest. We need to restore a little balance to our mad and busy lives. Yet, being forced to rest (because you have limited energy or if you push it get much worse) is fundamentally part of a life with a chronic physical illness. Moreover, to maintain health, we need a bit of rest as much as we need wise food, water, movement and daylight. 

I spend so much of my time seeing pals on the brink of major health trouble and I am practically screaming at them, “Please, please go carefully. If you push too hard you could end up in a ton of trouble. I know you think you’re invincible but nobody is and I am terrified for you. I know you’re bored and feeling unproductive but just put up with it for a little bit and let your body mend. Please listen, because we have had so much illness induced by pushing beyond that which a body can tolerate. I just don’t want you to suffer the same thing.”

 I’ve probably said that to you if you’ve got a nasty infection. You’ve probably said. “Oh I’ll be fine. It’s very hard for me to rest….” 

I understand but it is better to be rested than ruined. Two people got cross with me recently when they had covid but I didn’t care because our beloved friend died from covid. She would have given anything to have the choice of resting and the chance to be bored. 

Therefore it might be wise to see rest as precious as productivity. It might be wise to stop letting thoughts of laziness disappear. I must confess I am guilty of it. We all love being productive, useful and hopefully offering something of worth to the world.

Now here is the interesting part….during all those years of enforced inactivity was I worth any less in the eyes of my precious people?  Probably not. That is a big Lifejoy lesson to learn. Our achievements can be as empheral as tangible. Courage is hard to buy. Wisdom is priceless. Devotion has great value. They all start from within. They are often amplified by unchosen and unwanted circumstances. Their value is only in their stillness. Our stillness to observe and then try to emulate them. As for making joy, sometimes it can land on our laps in an effortless manner that is almost miraculous. 

I was going to write a blog about September being wisdom month in Your Lifejoy Year. I was going to talk about the wisdom of sunflowers and how they seek the light whilst accepting that they need support. They rest in the hope that they will strive and thrive with little effort and some tender care. Somehow we seem to have come full circle or should I say, we have waltzed our way to the same conclusion…sometimes in life we will be forced to rest; sometimes we have the luxury of being wise enough to know that we need it and sometimes we might be the person suggesting it for others. Wherever we are on that trajectory, go gently my friend because your worth is beyond measure.