In the second of her series for Phase looking at finding and using our strengths, Sarah Crittenden makes some suggestions for finding space for R&R... we like the sound of that!

Someone said to me the other day that they thought their current lifestyle wasn't so much 'working from home' as 'living at work'. Can anyone else relate to this?! Now we are spending so much more time at home, our work, rest and play are less distinct than they might usually be.

This means it's a good time to actively seek out moments to rest, relax and pause. Living in lockdown and working from home doesn’t mean we don’t need regular breaks. We have all been flooded with numerous changes and at times you may have felt overwhelmed with high levels of adrenalin, emotions, stress, anxiety and sleepless nights. Our central nervous system needs time to relax!

Embrace a consistent rhythm of rest. Rest restores and recharges us. Restoration replenishes us physically, fortifies our mental wellbeing, enabling us to engage emotionally.

Do you need to give yourself permission to stop and rest?

Next time you find yourself hurrying from one task to the next throughout the day without breathing space or time to rest in between, press pause and take a break!

Practice stopping!

Stop and exhale - take a few deep breaths.

Relax and drop your shoulders and your ‘shoulds’. It’s easy to get stuck thinking in terms of what you “should” do. Ask yourself: do I need or want to do this, or do I feel I should? Ask yourself: which of my strengths can I use to help me do what I need to do? Have a look at last week's blog about finding what your strengths are.

Going for a walk can be helpful if you need to clear your mind.

Practice using the ‘adaptability’ strength - this is an interesting article about what adaptability is. Think about adjusting your schedule if needed.

Simplify! Write down 3 priorities, focus on what matters most to you.

Taking a mental break helps your brain piece everything happening together to bring clarity, problem solve and make good decisions (drawing on the ‘strategic’ strength).

Just as our body needs rest, sleep and nourishment, our soul needs it too. Rest isn’t only about watching Netflix, but doing something to bring replenishment to your mind, body and soul.

Replenish activation

What do I need today?

How am I currently prioritising rest and replenishment?

What brings me joy? What will I do today simply because I enjoy it?

How am I nourishing myself? Are my sleep, exercise and nutrition habits helping me?

Humour is a character strength and laughter the best medicine! What makes me smile?

How will I prioritise laughter? At the end of the day you may choose to write down 3 funny things you remember and let yourself laugh about it again!

Kermit's having a laugh

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