Your Thoughts?…on Rest

Do you work in order to rest, or do you rest in order to work?

One of my hopes in presenting my book on followership is to encourage dialogue. As fellow followers, I believe we can learn a lot from one another. My own followership has been significantly shaped by my colleagues, and I can only guess how much more I could continue to improve if there were additional voices sharing their experiences and perspectives. As a result, I’ll be posting a “Your Thoughts?” question from time to time, and I hope that you’ll add your ideas to the discussion!

I devote one chapter of Embracing Followership to the concept of rest being a significant resource, one that’s necessary for us in order to follow with excellence. As I’ve contemplated the idea, I’ve come across at least two perspectives on rest.

From one side, we might think of rest as a reward; we work hard so that we earn a bit of vacation/holiday, or so that we have the money in order to enjoy a special trip. We spend ourselves in our labors, and then look to a time of rest in order to recover. As such, rest might be said to be fueled by our immediate past, the culmination of what we’ve just invested.

From a different angle, we might think of rest as being a preparatory time, one that will enable us to continue contributing our very best to the group that we’re involved with. We allow ourselves to slow down so that when the time comes we will be able to ramp-up, to give what we have to offer. In this case, rest is future-oriented: we rest now so that we can engage in what’s up next, so that we will have the energy and capacity to invest in the opportunities to come.

I wonder, which perspective on rest is most significant in your life?

And, do you struggle with giving yourself permission to rest? Do others facilitate opportunities for you to rest? Do you contribute to others’ ability to rest? What perspectives on rest do you encounter within your workplace, culture, family, & friends?

Please use the commenting function below to avoid your voice! Thanks for sharing your thoughts with me…I’m eager to learn from your experience!

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2 thoughts on “Your Thoughts?…on Rest

  1. A Facebook comment just reminded me of a challenging thought I once heard about rest: “rest is not utilitarian.” That idea really speaks to my internal drive to ‘maximize’ my rest and to make it as productive as possible.

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