As I mentioned in my last post I’m a great believer in the need for regular guilt-free rest. This is something that I have found to be even more important since I started working for myself. Without self-imposed boundaries it can be incredibly hard to switch off, let go and fully relax.
So I try to have one day off a week – a day free from work, commitments, and social media. And also, perhaps even more importantly, a break from the grinding of mental work cogs. This can be a bit of a challenge but I find when I’m able to have a proper rest I return to my work with renewed energy, purpose and perspective.
I love to watch animals at rest, because they give themselves so completely to whatever they are doing. Their peaceful state exudes a calm that inspires me to stop and be still. Even the simple act of drawing the sleeping fox cub on this post made me feel more restful.
One of my favourite poems is The Peace of Wild Things by Wendell Berry, who so eloquently describes the particular stillness of wild creatures who don’t carry our (often self-imposed) burdens. Beautiful words to read on a day of rest…¦
The Peace of Wild Things
When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.
Wendell Berry, from The Selected Poems of Wendell Berry. Copyright © 1998