Posted by: cmittermeier | August 18, 2014

pondering how to unwind

Its middle of the afternoon and the first level of digging to create our second patio is done.  We’ve got more digging to do, but I wanted my sons to be involved as well so I will stop here.  Now that I’ve taken the grass off they will be able to work on the project.  I had promised myself to do the gardening to work off my extra calories from yesterday and I’m pretty happy with what I was able to accomplish.  I will certainly sleep well tonight!

As I’ve worked, I’ve been pondering how I unwind, how I “rest” and “recuperate”.  First off, lets define the end state – lets define rested.  For me a big part of being rested means I’m now ready to do more work.  It doesn’t have to have me chomping at the bit, but I shouldn’t carry that “oh Lord, help me” fatigue.  I would describe it as some level of eagerness and acceptance of the challenge at hand rather than pre-defeat as I contemplate the hurdles ahead.  Yes folks, what I’m talking about is ATTITUDE.  Rest should not just leave one physically ready for the next day, but mentally as well.

There has to be a physical component, but I won’t speak much on that as it is the normal focus of most people’s thoughts when they think of rest.  Physically, to rest may include some exertion as that often helps “work out” frustrations or an activity that gets the heart pumping and muscles moving so you build back up those endorphins.  It may include some extra sleep or a nap, allowing the body extra time to repair and rebuild tissue.  It should include a blend of foods that help those processes and satisfy more than just the nutritional needs, but satisfy at least some taste buds.

Lets get back to mental, because there’s a spectrum to be considered.  It is now after dinner and as I sat quietly in our backyard after the meal, I realized that the mental game is quite variable.  There are days where resting mentally requires privacy, at other times the opposite – a time to connect with loved ones is needed.  There are times where mentally I need a sense of accomplishment, similar to how much I enjoyed working in my garden today.  There are times where I need a mental escape from all the work that is yet undone.  There are times where I am searching for a new understanding, other times where what satisfies is just knowing I am loved.  Refilling the mental game, I soon realized, was dependent more on which tank was lowest.

In the end, the big conclusion I have come to is that there is no single way to unwind.  I realized that I must first take time to ponder what area needs refreshing or else I will simply slide into a generalized “fill me up” which usually ends in stuffing my face.

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