In the pursuit of our dreams, we can very easily get caught up in all the work we have to do to realize them. And although this is important, its only half the strategy we need to apply. The other half is rejuvenation, rest and unwinding. Being tired isn’t a mistake. Therefore, taking some time off is critical for any person determined to become a success.
When can you do your best work?
After you have gone for a 4 hour bike ride? At 1 A.M. after giving a 5 hour lecture? When feeling stressed out and overwhelmed?
No. That’s a recepie for producing low quality work. Or it increases the chances of you making mistakes while working.
Would you want to be flown by a stressed and overwhelmed airline pilot?
The only time you can do your best work, is when your body is well rested. Also when your mind is settled or clear of unnecessary distractions. Most people achieve this state in the morning after a good night’s sleep.
However just like working, to make resting effective, it must be planned. The same way you have a plan for how you will get things done, you should plan for how you will take some time to relax.
Creating a schedule where work and play co-exist, will guarantee you to being the ultimate productive person. Too much and too little of both will definitely not make you effective. In some cases, it could even kill you.
You want to realize your goals. But you don’t want to hurt yourself in the process, if you can avoid it.
And with that, here are 3 reasons why, you should strategically plan rest into your daily routine.
You replenish lost energy
This has already be mentioned, but let it be emphasized. You can only do your best work, when your are well rested with a fresh mind. Furthermore, you can use more energy when you have more energy. And a sure way to replenish energy, is by resting, napping or even sleeping.
You make fewer mistakes
How many road accidents are a result of drivers who fell asleep behind the wheel? Imagine operating heavy machinery and falling asleep on the job.
Rest when you are tired. You shouldn’t even dare to perform heart surgery after doing 600 push-ups. No explanation needed.
You get new insight
If you are a problem solver or person with ambition, you can easily relate to this. How many problems have you been able to solve after having a good night’s sleep?
Your mind works in ways that can surprise you from time to time. Developing new insight or perspective is crucial to overcoming obstacles. Many times you gain these insights by having different people look at the problem. And sometimes, you gain insight by getting good night’s sleep.
Tackling a problem having been well rested is an effective strategy used by many top performers.
These aren’t the only reasons why you should take resting seriously. For instance staying healthy is also a good enough reason to not ignore rest and sleep.
But the message should be clear. If you don’t balance work and rest, you are not going to be as effective as you probably want/need to be.
However, rest and sleep aren’t the only strategies to unwind. The key is to do the opposite of the work you are engaged in. If you lift heavy equipment all day, sleep or relax to some cartoons on the couch.
If you code all day, sleep or go for a 30 minute walk.
You can read about the different ways in which the top performers in today’s world balance work and rest. And why many of them credit their wealth and success to a work-rest balnce.