This is the month when we move from summer activities to fall activities, particularly going back to school and back to work after vacations.
Even though there is generally more leisure time in the summer, there are those of us who are still busy doing, running and meeting our schedules and those of our families.
When our schedules take over our day, we wonder where the time went. So many times we do not stop until we have to, and then we feel depleted.
Awareness is the key to ending this feeling. Or, as author and psychiatrist Dr. Daniel Siegel put it: “If we can name it, we can tame it.” When we are aware, we can pay attention to signals that we are moving too fast, doing too much and overloading our system before it all starts to break down.
But often our warning signals get overridden by our activities. It’s not until we have time to rest and reflect that we see what has happened. And that rest is so important to building up our reserves again and to reflecting on how we can make changes.
Stress affects our body, mind and spirit, and we need time to recuperate. Depending on how run down we feel, healing can take some time. This is a challenge for those of us who are used to having busy schedules. We need to pace ourselves and stop when we feel tired or have little energy.
There are so many ways to take care of ourselves. When we are not feeling our best selves, it’s time to pause and rest.
Shabbat brings us rest, relaxation and restoration. Yvette Alt Miller said in her article, “Three Benefits of Celebrating Shabbat,” posted at Aish.com, “In my own home, I see the power of eating together on Shabbat in bringing us all together.
“During the week, we do try to eat family meals together, but our busy schedules often get in the way. Even when we do manage to sit down for a meal as a family, I find we’re lucky if it lasts twenty minutes: it seems like we’ve barely begun before everyone heads in their separate ways.
“On Shabbat, our meals feel very different than our quick family dinners during the week. On Shabbat we sit down to a beautifully set table and enjoy more elaborate and relaxing meals. Instead of getting up as soon as we’re done eating, everyone wants to linger and shmooze.”
Rest helps to restore and replenish our bodies, spirits and minds. So before we go back to school, or work, let’s take the time to find ways to rest our bodies, clear our minds and calm our emotions. Then we can move into the fall feeling rejuvenated.
PATRICIA RASKIN, owner of Raskin Resources Productions, is a media host, coach and award-winning radio producer and business owner. She is on the board of directors of Temple Emanu-El, in Providence. She is a recipient of the Providence Business News 2020 Leaders and Achievers award.