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A Journey to Balance and Well-Being

Growing up, I vividly remember coming in from a hard day on the farm and sitting down on the couch, only to hear someone make a joke about deserving to put your feet up for the rest of the day. Somehow, unintentionally, the message that became ingrained in me was that you rest only when the work is done.

I talk to so many rural people who feel this way, and I think it’s because there are seasons in our life when you do have to rest only when the work is done. In a snowstorm, animals must be cared for. When the weather is right, we need to harvest. When an animal is sick, it demands immediate attention. These are non-negotiable aspects of rural life where immediate and constant attention is required.

However, if we only rest once absolutely everything gets checked off the list, we will never rest. I assure you, the list will never be completed. Over the years, I’ve had to learn to look at rest and recharge differently. I’ve had to learn that rest is not a reward but, in fact, a requirement for me to perform well and to continue doing what I love.

I have so many interests that it’s easy for me to overcommit, to fill up my schedule with things I love doing but leave no time for rest or recovery. In these times, I feel frantic, get overwhelmed, end up late, stressed out, losing my temper easily, and showing up as not the best version of myself—both for myself and for others. I’m not perfect, but I’m learning to be realistic about my time and what I can actually accomplish. I’m learning to schedule walks outside and downtime, to prioritize things like yoga and meditation that ground me and help me find my way back to myself.

Am I always successful? No, but I’m continuously working on listening to my body and reminding myself that rest is not my reward for doing all the things but is required to continue to do the things I love.

The shift in perspective from viewing rest as a luxury to seeing it as a necessity has been transformative. By prioritizing rest, I find that I can approach my responsibilities and passions with renewed energy and enthusiasm. It's a lesson in balance and self-care, acknowledging that taking care of myself allows me to take better care of everything and everyone else in my life.

So, to anyone feeling the constant pressure to keep going without pause, I encourage you to rethink your approach to rest. Recognize that rest is essential for sustained performance and well-being. Embrace it not as an indulgence but as a critical part of your routine. In the end, the goal is not perfection but progress. By making small adjustments and consistently reminding ourselves of the importance of rest, we can create a healthier, more balanced life. Let’s give ourselves permission to rest and recharge, ensuring that we can continue to pursue our passions and responsibilities with joy and vitality.

Want to learn more about how you can slow down and live with more intention? Click HERE to read my previous blog!


Stacey Jo


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