As a child I would hear people use this phrase a lot and I never understood what it meant. How could changing what you were doing be the same as resting? More importantly, why would anyone want to rest?
As an adult I soon realised the importance of rest, particularly after my acromegaly diagnosis. I started to prioritise self care in a way that I never had before. For the last 15 years I have had to use my spoons very carefully (if you haven’t come across spoon theory, give it a Google, it’s a very useful analogy, especially for people with chronic fatigue conditions?). I have adjusted my life so that I don’t tire myself out and I can live a relatively full life provided I am careful.
This week we have been decorating. Not just decorating but swapping my two children’s rooms over; prepping, painting, moving furniture, building furniture… all the usual things. Two rooms from start to finish in a week, including new carpet. We knew it was going to be tight but it had to be done, we didn’t have another time we could do it.
As I am the chief decorator it has meant really long days and a lot more physical activity than I would usual do for so many days in a row. I tried to make sure I was resting on an evening but I know that I have been running on adrenaline most of the week (which really isn’t good for someone with my condition). Yesterday we finally got the finishing touches done and last night I collapsed in front of the TV feeling tired but contented, and really proud of myself. I had achieved what I had set out to achieve, with help, but I had managed to keep going and finish the job on time.
Today I am tired. I have that familiar adrenal ache in my lower back, but this week is all about writing and desk based work. I know I will recover with the help of a few good nights sleep and some energy healing.
I have worked, and really worked, all through my holiday, but I feel strangely energised this morning. I was desperate to get back to my desk and start writing and planning. I hadn’t realised how much headspace these room changes was taking up.
I feel refreshed and excited about what is still to come and although I feel physically tired I feel mentally more alive than I have done for weeks. It looks like the old saying is true, a change really is as good as a rest!
Kate Beddow is a writer, coach and wellbeing practitioner. As a mindfulness and meditation teacher, ex-teacher, healer, mum and stepmum she has a wealth of first hand experience. Kate works closely with women of all ages, guiding them to create a calm and happy life using journaling, meditation and mindfulness techniques. She is the creator of “Calmer Classrooms with Mojo”, a whole school wellbeing programme which is delivered in schools around the world. Kate is also the mindfulness trainer for Become the Force, a real life Jedi training school, and was a contributing author to “Women of Spirit” a book featuring amazing stories of real life women overcoming adversity.