on resting.

do you like how I say come back tomorrow and then I disappear for more than a week? that’s dumb.

I am not feeling well.
As you likely know, I’m navigating my way through a midlife energy drain and it just got worse.
But, I’m here and I’m doing my best to do the most critical things.

Students in my Twelve class get 24 emails every month. These emails are designed to invite curiosity or trigger memories that will help you become more inspired story tellers. I thought I could share today’s email with you …

Did you know that the difference in performance between very elite tennis players is not in how they play, but in how they rest? World Class tennis players learn how to rest and recover in the seconds between points, so that their breathing rate and pulse plummet.

How could you improve your engagement by being more deliberate about your disengagement?
For all the doctor’s I’ve seen and the books I’ve read, this question is at the core of my current struggles. I love life and I have attempted to live it perhaps a bit too fully. Or, let’s just say I’m still learning the necessity of intentional disengagement.

Please learn from me and practice the art of RESTING.
The book The Power of Full Engagement can help.

p.s. I LOVE the giveaway that is happening on Becky’s blog today. Go Angela!

Comments

  1. Theresa says:

    Oh Stacy! I hope you feel better soon. I love your blog and will wait until “tomorrow” comes and you post. And I don’t necessarily think it will be the actual tomorrow. You are an amazing, faith-filled, creative, generous, inspiring person with a busy life. I’d expect you to be tired. :-)

    I will keep you in my prayers and I hope your energy returns soon.

  2. Valerie says:

    Stacy, I completely got that! I’ve just turned 47, am a mum of 2 young boys, full time teacher and recently separated. Life has gone from hectic to frankly stressful. As I neared absolute burn-out, my first thought was to take care of myself. I’ve always spend a day out of my weekend planning lessons, making resources, marking books. I was desperate for rest but had never been able to avoid the work. As soon as I made the decision, I managed to become hyper active at work and fully engage using all available time possible. I’ve had 2 weekends of total disengagement and I can’t tell you how good it feels physically and mentally! I have already done my planning for next week and I will keep the marking for the evenings. I also now go to Art classes for parents at my child’s secondary school (a beautiful building, typical English boys college, which in itself fills me with awe). I also started scrapbooking again seriously after 5 years thanks to you and Twelve. I am also taking Design Challenge and enjoying it. I feel so creative and inspired to create a new story for my life! Without reading the book, I figured out I needed to engage more fully in my job during the week so that I could fully disengage at the weekend. I think I had no other choice. I need to make many changes but I am glad I started with that one. I would urge anyone to do the same. I am so happy I am part of your community Stacy. Thank you!

  3. Welcome back! Hope you had a great birthday!

    With a little rest, I’m sure you’ll perk back up again… just like the Energizer Bunny! :)

  4. I have the same issue. I either go-go-go like the Energizer Bunny or I lay on the couch for 2 days, feeling unproductive and like a loser. My brain doesn’t want to shut off at night because I’m so chock full of ideas, inspiration and information. I wonder if you are like that because I think we have similar personalities. I hope you get the rest you need. That’s a great reminder to us all! Hugs!

  5. PS: I do still want to know about what you want to do in the next year of your life. That sounds interesting! (from your last post)

  6. Stacy
    You do need to rest. I learned this the hard way last year as I was creeping upon turning 40
    I went to the doctor because I just didn’t feel good. I was worn out and I remember as I walked down to the X-ray room in my dr.’s office that I told the nurse I was exhausted from just walking down the hall. They did EKG, X-ray, blood tests and everything came back fine. The dr. Came in the exam room and I prepared for bad news and he chuckled and said, “you’re exhausted!”. Go home and rest. I realized I hadn’t been sleeping a full 8 hours (more like 6 hours) and not restful sleep at that. So I took a week and slept til I woke up ( and this is with my 17yr & 4yr old I homeschool), and took naps as I felt I needed during the day and made sure I took my vitamins. Sure enough I was back to 100% by the next week.

    You are right, it’s important to remember our body needs to repair and rest.
    Hope you feel revived and renewed soon. Prayers for you!!
    Hugs
    Jen

  7. It makes me sad to see you say “that’s dumb.” It’s not dumb. At all. I am sorry you are struggling. If I can be totally selfish for a minute – I actually really needed to hear that someone else was struggling today because I am struggling too. I am off to the doctor next week. I have zero energy, and no good excuse for it. I have managed to completely disengage myself (and trust me when I say you don’t want to swing to that end of the engagement/disengagement pendulum either) and have no excuses for my lack of energy and interest. It can be very easy to feel quite alone in these circumstances. So even though you think you aren’t doing much, I hope you at least know you helped me out today. Here’s to finding our energy again!

  8. Earlier this year I could no longer ignore how wiped out I was from doing nothing. I found out after a visit to the doctor that I was severely iron deficient and also vitamin d deficient. Now I am on supplements but still can barely function some days, especially these last few days. I am getting better and can do more but the days I feel good I tend to do too much. This sets me back because then I spend the next day doing very little. I look forward to reading that book. I am learning now that rest is very important and how you rest is important too. Thank you for sharing with us. I hope you find the answers you need and can begin to feel better.

  9. I’ve been thinking a lot about energy, too. And, I know the feeling of loving life, and just wanting to do so many things. And I’ve gone through periods where I think I can do it all if I just put my mind to it, and just keep pushing forward. But, I really hate the feeling of slogging through the day at work, so I’ve worked on cutting down and making choices, and the hardest part…leaving some things undone for later.

  10. Stacy, I’m sorry your are ‘running on empty’ and hope you will take time to rest and recharge. With a busy schedule, many demands of family, and all that you are, I’m guessing you don’t take enough ‘me’ time. Now is the time to TAKE it. I’ve been where you are several times and it’s no fun. I have learned over many years that it is important to rest when you can, not overbook your calendar and to take time to enjoy something just for you each day. It doesn’t have to be a lot of time but it’s the habit of taking that time to relax and do something totally for you (read, walk, write, create, sing etc.).

  11. I’ve noticed that about every ten weeks I CRASH and BURN.

    Well, at least that’s what I THOUGHT it was doing, until I started listening to my body. And now, when that looming “crash and burn” starts creeping up on me, I clear the calendar, cancel everything, and LAY DOWN. It’s amazing how some sleep, some reading, some quiet, and some comfort food can magically transform a person in 48 hours. I’m getting sick less, and my mood is even better after taking “me” time.

    And I’ve stopped feeling bad about my down time. It’s my one and only life, my one and ONLY body. And I need to take care of it.

    I hope you feel better remarkably soon and that you can keep making my day sunny and bright and happy.

    No pressure. :)

  12. Elisabeth Costa says:

    Thank you for sharing this…I really needed to hear this today:) Isn’t it funny how we feel guilty about doing nothing when really doing “nothing” such as resting and listening to our body is really what is best for us!! The last couple of days I have felt guilty about listening to what my body really was telling me I needed and felt like I wasn’t doing enough to push myself….I’m not lazy but why do we feel like if we’re not “on” and completing something it’s not worthwhile…since when do I view rest in such a negative manner? Please take care of yourself and enjoy your rest as needed:)

  13. Rebecca says:

    I am so sad to hear that you’re feeling worse. I hesitate to say anything because I’m sure you’ve seen lots of doctors and tried everything…but a few months ago I saw a naturopath and had a food intolerance test. I discovered that I was intolerant to DAIRY, oats, soy, gluten and other random things. I knew about my dairy intolerance, and I know you have been drinking less dairy milk, too. I’ve cut out all those things for a couple months and have really felt TONS better. If you haven’t had a food intolerance test done, that might be something to think about…

    Also, I saw you mention Vitamin Water somewhere…I used to drink that, too, but about 2 years ago I really went on a healthy food kick and cut out high fructose corn syrup, refined sugars, all meat & dairy and switched to a whole foods, plant-based diet and our family (of 7) has become MUCH healthier. We have enjoyed trying lots of new foods and don’t miss the other stuff at all. It was a big adjustment but I have really felt like this was the right thing for our family.

    I know you really strive to be healthy and probably don’t need my advice, but I just wanted to share my experience. I have read so many books and have really been SHOCKED by how the food industry has really taken control and how hard it is to eat REAL food that is the way our grandparents ate–so many things are now packaged, chemically sprayed, genetically altered and don’t resemble the food the pioneers ate AT ALL. It makes me sad because I believe that Heavenly Father gave us everything we need for our bodies because he created us, but man has tried to “improve” food and it’s not really an improvement!

    Fave quote about this–”man is the only animal smart enough to make his own food and stupid enough to eat it.” We are what we eat, and we’re designed to run on good food and good rest and all that good stuff. :) Michael Pollan has written some really good books about this–In Defense of Food: an Eater’s Manifesto and Food Rules are some good ones to start with in all your spare time, lol! :)

    Thanks for being you and being real. We love you!

    • Peggy M says:

      Rebecca- I’m with you on this in that I feel a lot of our “ills” are food related to things we shouldn’t be eating (grains, sugars etc) and not enough real foods, good fats, proteins and plants as we lived on for thousands of years before we became an agricultural society & moved to creating food. Your quote is awesome.

  14. TerrieF says:

    Wishing you, very simply, much rest…

  15. Lisa - Saner4 says:

    I understand how you are feeling because I feel it too. After reading the other comments on your blog, I think they’re are more women out there that struggle with being worn out too. I know part of my problem is that I don’t sleep well; I go to sleep just fine, but can’t seem to sleep more than a few hours :( I’m trying to get back into an exercise routine, but that has been difficult with working full time and being exhausted when I get home and not having energy to work out after making dinner etc. Even worse, is that I haven’t even scrapbooked in months :/ But, I have hope that we will all figure this out and find a way to rest properly and grasp life by the horns again.

  16. Alarm bells went off in my head when I read in your last post “I woke up very tired this morning, boarded a plane home and arrived just in time to teach Sunday school.” We need to make choices about where we put our time and energy.

  17. Peggy M says:

    Stacy- “tomorrow” will come & hope you will feel better whenever tomorrow is. As women, I believe we are all ingrained to be doing everything and feel that if we don’t we’ve failed. It doesn’t matter if we work outside of the home or only in the home (we all know that in itself is a full time job too). It’s hard for us to take time for ourselves because we feel such a need to justify it. I always remind myself that if I’m not taking care of ME properly, I can’t take care of anyone else properly. Sometimes saying “no” to something is the hardest thing to do. I try to remind myself that there really are other people who can do it and sometimes there are other people who SHOULD be doing it. It lets me disengage more. During the summer, I’m better able to disengage when we camp most weekends. Life does slow down but somehow it seems like I have to run double time during the week to get the slowdown.

  18. Maurren says:

    sorry things have taken a down turn, get some rest, and be kind to yourself.

  19. Kathleen S says:

    Twenty-eight emails a month is an elephant right in the middle of the energy source. I’ve been wondering how you do it. Must admit I love them, and your thoughts that go with. I’m a little further down the age path than you are, but I’ll give you my Dad’s advice. You can do all you used to, but not all at once; you have to take short breaks, and then start up again. So I do. I also use the 15-20 min. timer on my life, and disect jobs into tasks. Even ‘critical things’ can be cut down to size. And the blog isn’t critical — yeah, yeah, so we miss you but time to veg out, Stacey!

  20. Karen Schmidt says:

    Feel better Stacy.

  21. Cathy L. says:

    Hope you feel better soon!

  22. Katie Scott says:

    I know you are in charge of lots of stuff, I have that same sort of deal. There is a quote on Pin interest (spellcheck) that goes ” the world will not stop if you take a break” and it’s true. I am also a bit of a control freak but have trying to know and trust that I can check out and take a break when I need one. And then I can come back all full of energy later. Anyway, long way to say “I know what you mean!”

  23. Rhonda H says:

    Stacy,
    Please do cut yourself a break. I’m 48, and have been having some health “issues” slowing me down for a couple of years, too! I don’t think it is a coincidence that I lost my parents one after another within 2 years. Mom has been gone a year and a half and I am still not up to speed after her death.
    I just keep trying to evaluate my health and working on solutions…some with doctors, some without.
    We love and admire you…no matter how often you post on your blog. Take care of YOU so you can take care of your family…first. We’ll be ok. You have given us the tools to continue on our TWELVE journey. At this point, it is really up to us.
    See ya later!!!
    Rhonda (mom2h)
    ps- I am going to ask myself what KIND of REST I need today…then I’m gonna DO IT.

  24. Mary-Lou says:

    So glad you have not given up your blog. I pray & hope that you are feeling better very soon. Just maybe this energy drain is a whisper reminder to yourself that YOU need to put yourself first so that you can take care of the wonderful family you have. I will always check back tomorrow for a blog update ……. :-)

  25. Cathy S says:

    I loved this email when I received it yesterday. It was first one from 12 that I really wanted to share, and now that you’ve posted it to your blog, you’ve given me permission to do so. Hope your quest to powerfully disengage is successful.

  26. Take the time. I just got over gall bladder surgery and taking the time to rest (and not picking up my 3 year old) is important to not do any worse damage. I don’t realize how tired I still get 4 weeks later. Doing it now will benefit you in the future.

    You’re in my prayers.
    (I’m the one who sent you an e-mail about my sons wanting to be green like yours.)

  27. I completely understand. 12 years ago we adopted 3 siblings and already had 2 bio children. Long, long story, but I’ve lived in crisis/stress daily until really the last few months. This included my parents going into a nursing home and me handling everything, including 60 years of their home together. My dad passed away, my mom died from hypothermia after wandering outside on a frigid night (nursing home’s fault). My sister died right after we adopted. This doesn’t include any of the devastation from parenting wounded, traumatized kids. And last year, my oldest daughter got married and my oldest son went off to college! Needless to say, my health changed drastically. I just turned 50 and my goal is to take my health back, one step at a time. For me, that has always involved a nap in the afternoon, which usually is just 30 minutes or so. But after fighting insomnia for years, it is what keeps my energy going through the evening. I pray you will find what works for you, even if it requires giving those things up that are “good” in order to concentrate on what’s “better.’ God bless.

  28. Thinking about you and hope you things turn around for you very soon. I struggle with my energy level as well and it is very frustrating. Enjoy your resting and I hope that you have some good books to help you out in that respect!

  29. Stacy- I’ve struggled with whether or not to post but it is on my heart so I will share my thoughts. First, let me just say that you will never, ever (in this life) grasp the tremendous impact you have had on so many people you will never meet. I know because I am one of them. I marveled at the honest layouts you shared in Simple Scrapbooks, I am way to afraid to ever “put it out there” the way you do, but I admire your courage. In the Nov/Dec 2007 issue of SS you have a layout called “Don’t” and it’s about the things you do not try to do. However, ironically, the thing that struck me at the time was the top of the page where you said “I get a LOT done. I get up early, I often go to bed late and I rarely sit still” I thought to myself, “Her sense self worth seems to be tied to the amount of tasks she accomplishes” I know this because I’ve got the same problem. For me, when it is “big” things like this, God often has to try really hard to get my attention and to remind me that I don’t have to “do” anything, I am a beloved child and I need to love myself, I don’t need to “earn” my self worth. I try to remember NOT to be a “human doing” but instead be a “human being”, no better and no worse than all of God’s other children. I am not in charge, I surrender and let God take the wheel. You are phenomenal just as you are!

  30. I read some of the other comments, so I apologize if I seem redundant. :-/

    I hope you’re able to get some rest. I know how hard it is… I have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Osteoarthritis. It’s tough with a baby too… especially, since my heart wants six children. LOL. :-)

    It’s so hard waking up and just feeling drained! Sometimes, my core feels so tired that it feels like I did 1,000 sit-ups while I was sleeping. But it’s just how my body is. I know stress makes me worse too. I’m trying not to take on anything else besides my family, and I’ve had to give up many things that felt like they were draining me. I do, however, still watch my bishop’s children on Thursdays because it feels more of a relaxing break than a stressor. LOL. It has become my favorite day of the week. It actually rejuvenates me. :-)

    So I’m hoping you can find some rejuvenation for yourself, Stacy! :) I know you’re such a wonderful mom and an awesome friend. Keep your chin up, Lovely! You’re amazing. :-)

  31. Stacy,
    Check out The Paleo Diet by Loren Cordain and The Paleo Solution by Robb Wolf. I can’t recommend them strongly enough. Our diet has a tremendous impact on our health.

  32. DorothyCC says:

    Please take the time you need to rest and recover. We are loyal to you and will keep checking your blog even if you don’t post something new everyday.

  33. Kristen says:

    Stacy – its NOT dumb to take a break when your body needs it. It’s one of the smartest things you can do. That being said, I’d like to say “ditto” to what everyone else has said and share some wise words from my therapist. She says, “God does not give us a bigger yoke than what we can handle. So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed, you’ve probably taken on more than what God asked of you.” And another friend reminded me that when I take on something God has not asked me to do, I’m taking it away from the person He had intended it for. I’m not trying to be bossy and tell you what to do or not to do…just sharing what I needed to hear and maybe it will help you or someone else as well!

  34. I have created a blog using Blogspot, and I want it to appear on Google Search. Can someone provide me with the steps to do so? . . Much appreciated!.

  35. Stacy, so sorry to hear that you are not feeling well. It’s hard, as a Mom, to even say those words, I know. Thinking of you and sending virtual hugs. ~ Laura

  36. Keep up the fantastic piece of work, I read few articles on this internet site and I believe that your web blog is real interesting and has circles of wonderful info .

  37. Bernadette says:

    Stacy, I hope you do indeed rest! You are such an inspiration to so many women, and we all need to take time to take care of ourselves. I admire all that you do and wonder how you accomplish so much – but if you continue to go at such a pace without the rest that you need, you will not be there for your family. I learned this lesson the hard way – I pressed my body too far for WAY too long and wonder now if I will ever have energy again.

    May God bless you during this frustrating time.

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