I believe in doing everything in life with intentionality. Even things that seem trivial like rest. After surviving my first year of teaching (I'm not really ready to talk about it yet) I finally have a good chunk of time to rest. Now what do I do with myself?
In the past, I have used all my down time to peruse Facebook, and Pinterest, or space out watching TV. Now, those things are enjoyable and restful in moderation. However, I think I squeeze the most out of my rest times when I use them in different ways. As an introvert, to truly rest I also need some think time. Television and mindless internet surfing are brain-numbing activities--which sometimes, I need! But if I stick with my default rest mechanisms I think that I will look back on this summer with a tinge of regret. So I am making a plan for using my rest well.
Here's how I want to rest this summer:
Read! The irony of being an English teacher is you don't really have time to read for fun during the school year. You're busy keeping up with the kiddos' reading. This summer, I vow to read books because I want to read them. On my list are Great Gatsby, The Divergent Series, The Fault in Our Stars, I am Malala, and Blue Like Jazz. Here's hoping I get through at least a couple of these.
Write! For me, writing is reflective and that is one of the things that I find the most restful. It helps me to look at my life and see value. I also am optimistic enough to believe that I have important things to say, and that my writing could potentially benefit someone else.
Create things! I enjoy making things. It helps me to feel at peace. Being creative is a huge part of my personality, so I think I feel like I am in my element when I am creating something. Plus, this is another thing I had a hard time making time for during the school year.
Be with Jesus! This is probably the most restful activity, though it might require the most effort. When I spend time in the word and in prayer I rest on a soul-level. I am currently going through the devotional "Thirsty," for the second time and it's still so good! One of my favorite things to do during the summer is to hit a park with some iced chai and spend time with God in the sunshine.
Be outside! I love the outdoors. However, there are two pesky barriers that often keep me from venturing outside. 1. I am always cold. I hate being cold! So when it's cold outside (and we're talking Chelsea-Standard of what cold is) all I want to do is hide under a blanket with a warm beverage. 2. I have a deep fear of bugs. Seriously. I don't think they will harm me, I just don't want them to touch me. They creep me out. It's so beautiful during the summer, that I am willing to risk the second barrier to enjoy scenery and warm rays.
Be with my husband! I am an introvert, so I enjoy resting alone, but I also feel so at rest when I am with my husband. I love to cuddle up on the couch surrounded by snacks and watch a movie with my beloved. I also enjoy quiet-coffee shop conversation, and slow strolls through the park. Ahhhh.
Don't worry, I also have some things to get done this summer like chores, finishing a giant research paper, and working at summer school (just three days a week for three weeks), but in the meantime this girl is getting her rest on.
How are you resting this summer?