It is your right to rest.
Has your employer ever prioritized your right to rest? I don't mean just offering PTO or saying that you should take a vacation. I mean, do they prioritize your right to rest every single day?
Since I quit my job at a start up, and start ups are NOTORIOUS for that work grind hustle let me tell you, I reexamined my relationship (or more so lack there of) to rest.
In fact, I was always rewarded and complimented for hustling, pushing myself, and achieving incredible metrics and results. I was used to working 12 to 15 hour days and excelling at it. Every company I have worked at found this impressive, but deep down inside, I was struggling. I knew this was not normal nor sustainable. When I took vacation, I attempted to rest but I couldn't mentally turn my brain off from work - I knew that when I got back to the office my inbox would be drowning in hundreds of emails.
One day, I got paired up with someone who soon after became my manager. We talked about those “incredible metrics” to which she responded, “So, when do you sleep?”
“When am I supposed to sleep?” I said.
I shared with her that I have always worked this way. I am 10000000% hustling for majority of the year and then I am 1000000% burnt out for an entire month and can only will myself to do the bare minimum. I shared with her that I felt like I had no choice and there was certainly some truth to that. The company glorified the hustle.
She was the first person in my entire life that told me the way I was working is absolutely unacceptable and that I am entitled to rest and entitled to boundaries.
From that day forward, I implemented these boundaries. My metrics began to slip. I was told by higher ups that I needed to take on more work. I was no longer the super star. But you know what?
Their expectations were unrealistic. The expectations that I had internalized and put on myself, were unrealistic.
We are human and we have limitations. It is okay to have limitations!!! My goodness.
It wasn't until I quit that job and started my own company that I truly got to see what rest is. I made it my personal mission to embody REST and to surround myself with those that are in alignment with that mission, too.
June is my birthday month (cancer bb right here!) and also Pride month. I knew that I wanted to really slow down and focus on not only rest, but pleasure and joy! I went on two vacations that were absolutely so nourishing for my soul. I shared with a few friends that for the first time in my life I was able to be present and not freak out about what my inbox would look like when I got back. Just saying that out loud felt so surreal. I never thought in a million years I, Stella Gold, would be saying that.
I am grateful to finally be prioritizing my rest, my wellbeing. When I take care of myself, I take care of others. I am a better friend, business owner, partner, and human when I am well rested.
I want to highlight the Nap Ministry for their commitment to rest as liberation. To learn more about their incredible work check out For The Wild's podcast episode featuring Tricia Hersey, the Founder of the Nap Ministry.
“To not rest is really being violent towards your body, to align yourself with a system that says your body doesn’t belong to you, keep working, you are simply a tool for our production…”
— Tricia Hersey
To rest is really to reclaim your body, to take back what is rightfully yours.
How are you prioritizing your rest?
And if you aren't, here I am passing along that message:
It is your right to rest. You are entitled to having limits. You are entitled to having boundaries.
Now go take a nap. ;)