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March 20, 2024

Episode 23: The Seven Types of Rest

In this episode, we discuss the concept of rest and the seven types of rest identified by Dr. Saundra Dalton-Smith. The seven types of rest are physical rest, mental rest, spiritual rest, emotional rest, sensory rest, social rest, and creative rest.

We took the seven types of rest quiz to see where we were deficient. We share our results, ways we’re working to address our rest deficits, and offer practical tips for each type of rest. As always, we emphasize the need for self-awareness and self-care.


  • Rest is not just about physical relaxation, but also includes mental, emotional, spiritual, sensory, social, and creative aspects.
  • Self-awareness is key in identifying areas of rest that may be depleted and need attention.
  • Taking breaks and engaging in activities that restore and recharge each type of rest can lead to greater overall well-being.
  • Finding a balance and prioritizing different types of rest can lead to a more fulfilling and balanced life.
  • Surrounding oneself with the right people is crucial for social rest.
  • Finding meaning and purpose is key to achieving spiritual rest.
  • Connecting with nature and practicing mindfulness can contribute to overall rest.


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This transcript was generated by AI so please ignore any weird errors. If there is anything really terrible, let us know.

[00:00:00] Sarah: Today we are focused on rest. So last time we spoke , we focused on sleep more specifically. And today we’re going to kind of continue that conversation, but broaden it to think about rest more broadly… what are the different components of rest?

And we came up with this idea based on a TED Talk that I had watched. Uh, it’s based on research by Dr. Saundra Dalton-Smith. She’s a physician, a researcher, and an author of a book. Her book is called Sacred Rest, Recover Your Life, Renew Your Energy, and Restore Your Sanity.

And the title of her TED Talk is, The Real Reason Why We Are So Tired and What To Do About It. So I enjoyed this. It gave me some new insights into what it takes to actually feel restored. Uh, and also there’s a quiz involved and I love a quiz, which doesn’t take too long, but it gives you some immediate feedback.

Uh, so that was a bonus. Yeah.

[00:01:05] Pam: We love a quiz that tells you something about yourself.

[00:01:08] Sarah: Yeah. And Pam, you had pulled out something to share about the concept of rest.

[00:01:15] Pam: Yeah. So we’re talking about it, about rest here. And Dr. Dalton Smith talks about the seven types of rest, but when I started, listening to her talk and reading about it, I realized that. What we’re talking about isn’t rest in the sense of like laying down and taking a nap or, physically resting or not doing anything.

It’s this broader concept of what you do to recharge or to reduce overstimulation. So it could be something physical. It could be taking a walk, which is clearly not resting. But if that is what feels nourishing to you and makes you feel recharged, then that falls under this greater umbrella

[00:01:58] Sarah: Yes. And I even think of the word restoration, like you’re restoring yourself.

[00:02:03] Pam: Yeah, that’s a good way

[00:02:04] Sarah: Okay. So let’s begin with the seven types of rest. Cause she identifies that there are seven types. So we’re going to begin by quickly just covering what they are. And then we’re going to talk about our survey results, how we each fared, and then we’re going to talk a little bit more about each one in detail what it looks like when we’re depleted in that area, and some suggestions for how to replenish in that particular area.

All right, so we’re going to get started with the 7 types. The 1st one is what we think about most often when we think about rest, which is physical rest. Right. Although she does even distinguish this into two parts, she talks about passive physical rest, which is sleep, high quality sleep, and then she talks about active physical rest.

And for this, she’s talking about yoga, stretching, and massage therapy, those types of gentle motions.

Next up we have mental rest. Mental rest is measured by our ability essentially to quiet our mind. The chitter chatter of our mind. So when we’re mentally rested, we can turn our mind off at the end of the day, uh, when it’s time for bed.

And we have those resources to really feel more peaceful and in the moment.

Third, we have spiritual rest. So let’s note that this is not necessarily a connection to a specific spiritual belief system or religion per se, though it could be.

But it really is about our sense of connection to a higher purpose or higher power, if you will. Uh, so for example, it could be something that is expressed through meditation or, or connecting with, with nature, or spiritual rest could even be manifested, uh, in her definitions by deriving a sense of purpose from our work, from our external connections.

Do you think that encapsulates what the spiritual rest piece is?

[00:04:06] Pam: I do. And I’m glad that we’re really calling out that this is not necessarily about religion. I took the quiz before knowing that, and there were two questions in there that specifically mentioned God. And so I was a little bit like, Ooh, what are we doing? So yeah, it’s definitely, it’s more about connection, community, higher purpose, feeling like what you’re doing has purpose behind it, and that could involve religion, it could involve community, it could just be a personal connection with something.

[00:04:38] Sarah: Yeah, a greater, yeah, I like that. Greater sense of purpose and meaning. Okay, great. Thanks.

So that’s number three. Uh, number four is emotional rest. And I thought this one is interesting because she defines it as our ability to be really truthful and authentic with how we’re actually feeling. So instead of people pleasing and trying to act a certain way when we’re emotionally rested, it means we’re just being ourselves.

[00:05:07] Pam: Yeah, and it’s interesting to think about that as a type of rest, but if you think about the work that we do trying to people please or just appeal to what we think other people want. It is a lot of work and it is so much more comfortable when you’re around people that you’re not trying to please or that know you and that you’re confident around.

It is much more calming.

[00:05:32] Sarah: And I, I love the way you’re describing it. And I’m thinking about certain relationships in my life or friendships where I feel completely at peace with myself. And there’s a different felt sense when you’re in the company of those people, and you do feel that sense of like, whoo, in your body.

Okay. So that’s emotional rest, number four.

Number five, I also thought, oh yeah, I felt called out on this one, is sensory rest. So this is when we are able to take a break from all the sensory overload that we can experience during a day. And what I mean by that is lots of lights, screens, sounds, music, TV blasting in the background, uh, overhead lights, even heavy scents or fragrances, really any of, any of the sensations.

When we’re in a crowded space, when we’re out in the world, or even when we’re working at home alone, any of those sensations can take a toll on our system. So sensory rest is when we’re able to disconnect from all of those sensations in order to restore.

Number six is social rest. And The title social rest might indicate that it’s about taking a break from social environments, but it doesn’t actually mean that.

What she’s actually referring to is cultivating opportunities to be in relationship with people who make us feel good. So kind of like the emotional rest right? Being in relationship with people where you’re feeling comfortable. But this is really being selective around, okay, which relationships are lighting me up and making me feel supported, positive, alive.

And which relationships are depleting me and how can I have the wisdom to really veer towards those ones that are, replenishing me and feel really good versus the depleting ones. So the social rest is when we’re with people who are, who are bringing out the best in us. That’s how I describe it.

And now last but not least, is creative rest. So this is when we’re able to appreciate beauty in any form. So, this could mean from nature, feeling in awe of nature. It can also mean the feeling of awe that we can experience by looking at art in any form, anything that we think is beautiful.

So we’re in depletion of that when we’re not around nature or art, and then when we’re able to just sort of take some time and take that in. We can restore that type of creative rest.

So I’m going to describe how the quiz works, and then you can tell us about your results. Okay, so this is how the quiz or the survey works. You’re asked a series of questions. You can do it online, and based on your input, you’re given a score for how you’re doing in each of the seven categories.

So the higher the score, it means the more out of balance you are in that particular area. And therefore, she’s advising us sensibly to focus on restoring that particular area of your life first. And she has sort of different ranges of scores that tell you, uh, how depleted or fulfilled you are in that area.

So how did you do Pam in, in your survey results?

[00:08:55] Pam: For reference, the scores go from 0 to 35+ We don’t know how high they potentially go, but anything over 15 is supposed to be areas that you can focus on and I didn’t have any scores fall under 15, which was really surprising to me because I’m probably the most rested person that I know.

I spend a lot of time focusing on, on what makes me feel calm and centered. So I thought that was really interesting. My highest score, the one that I needed to focus on the most was emotional rest, where I got a 24. And that felt true because, as we’ve discussed, people pleasing tendency is something that I struggle with.

So, I think that that, uh, that definitely made sense that I need to spend a little bit more time on maybe emotional expression and authenticity,

[00:09:47] Sarah: Mm-Hmm.

[00:09:48] Pam: in expressing how I feel and not doing the people pleasing.

I also got a 23 on mental rest. Not surprising there either because I definitely do have a very busy brain and that’s something that I spend a lot of time focusing on is how to relax my, anxious thoughts and just feel more calm in general.

The one that that I know about, knew about already is sensory, where I got 23 as well. I’m extremely sensitive to artificial light, loud noises, any sort of like external stimulation like that. Like when the sun goes down, we turn all the lights in our house almost off. They’re extremely dim because we don’t, we’re both very sensitive to light when there shouldn’t be light.

I wear noise canceling headphones, even if I’m not listening to something, I just sit here with them in because I cannot stand, random noises and annoying things. It’s just, uh, it’s just one of those things. I sleep with earplugs in, like, this is a big thing for me is I need a lot of quiet and blocking out the world so that I don’t feel overstimulated there.

How about you? What were your biggest deficits?

[00:11:03] Sarah: I had quite a lot of deficits. Uh, my biggest deficit was physical. So I think I got to go back and listen to our last podcast again about sleep. And I know that’s true. So I scored a 29, uh, which is categorized under “you are feeling the effects of your lack of rest and need a change.”

I liked how clear and direct that was.

I think I’m often tired and I, and I plow through, I think I’m a very high functioning, tired person. I get enough, enough sleep to function and wake up and I’m, I’m okay. But I could do better with one to two hours more sleep a night, which is what we discussed last time.

And something I’m working on actively I’m aware of. So that was interesting that it was scored the highest.

I was surprised at creative rest. I also scored very high at 27 at creative rest. So again, just a reminder, creative rest is when I’m connected to, uh, something beautiful, namely nature and art.

I felt sort of sad when I saw that. I thought physical, yeah, I don’t get enough sleep. Okay. I know that already. The creative one made me pause. And I didn’t love seeing that because I love nature and I also love art. I love beauty in all its form. And I realized that recently I haven’t had a lot… it’s been winter here.

I’ve been doing a lot of work. My days have been shorter, lots of things going on with the family. So during the days, it’s been a lot of, bang things out for work, get stuff done. Maybe a quick walk around, but fewer of the ravine walks, the nature walks, haven’t been on a holiday in a while to sort of a place that’s seeped in nature, right?

I have gone to some concerts lately, a little bit of concerts in theater, but less than other times in my life. So I think it’s also a period of my life where this isn’t happening a lot. And I know in other periods of my life, it’s happening a lot more, right? For example, in the summer, there’s a lot more festivals happening in the city that we tend to go to as a family where there’s more art happening.

There’s music happening. Typically I take a couple of holidays every summer, every year and going somewhere beautiful. That really nourishes me. I spend a lot more time outdoors. So I think. It was good to see that pointed out, and at the same time, I don’t want to feel too bad about it, because I know that it’s going to ebb and flow.

[00:13:45] Pam: Yeah.

[00:13:45] Sarah: Yeah, so I think I don’t want to have also this feeling of, oh, anxiety and guilt, like, oh my gosh, I have to have under 15 in all of the categories.

[00:13:55] Pam: No, definitely not. And I think that the categories kind of all relate to each other in some ways. You’re not just going to be in a, in a situation where like one you’re in deficit and it’s very clear and you just like fix that. I think like in general, you can look at this list and see like, Oh, like part of my life is a little out of balance or it’s just a season or whatnot.

And so everything is sort of affected. So it’s, it’s not like, you’re, you’re going to get like one solution and you fix that and, and, magic happens. It’s more just sort of like an awareness of where you’re at in your life and, and what you maybe need to just put a little bit of attention into and that will help

[00:14:36] Sarah: Yeah, and also I’m thinking, in a way, these are categories for balance. I mean, rest is one word, restoring in those areas, and Also, what are the different components of life that give us meaning that when we’re focused on each of them, we feel a sense of balance and equilibrium. So I think for me, the creative one was interesting.

I thought, okay, yeah, I could, I could and want to prioritize a little bit more of that. And then I think that would shift and feel good.

The next one, which was high for me. So similar to you. Was the sensory and I’m also sensitive to noise. In fact, do you remember when we first started talking about this podcast and you said, Oh, and we, and we talked about putting it on YouTube and there would be a song and I said, Oh, I’m really worried about the song because I’m used to my kids sometimes will put on YouTube designed for for kids and the sounds, the jingles are really, they’re terrible. They’re really aggravating to my nervous system. So that as a small example, when I hear TV, when I hear the YouTube sounds, Oh my gosh. So noise in particular. Less so with the light, but I think noise, screens, and obviously screen Zoom. I do so much teaching and coaching with Zoom.

Super grateful for it. I love it as a tool, and it can also really, I can feel exhausted. And I feel it, like I feel the sensations in my body when it’s just been too much, and I need to shut it all down. I can’t sit down and like have a bath and read my book and I can’t have anything else.

So those were my top three.

Physical, not surprised. Creative, was surprised. Then with reflection it sort of made sense. And sensory, oh yeah that made sense to me and I thought, oh I think I’m going to order some noise cancelling headphones like Pam so I can block out some of that noise during the day.

[00:16:32] Pam: Yeah. And as you’re talking and I’m thinking about the sensory rest and the creative rest and how, like, that could have a lot of overlap there that, if you get back into nicer weather and you’re doing your, walks outside. You get less of the sensory overload while also getting the beauty and the creative rest. So you get like a combination of those. So I can see as your season changes that you’ll get better scores on both creative and sensory rest.

[00:17:08] Sarah: I like that. It’s true.

I recently came across an article on Substack by a woman named Diana Butler Bass, I think is how you say her last name.

[00:17:18] Pam: And she’s an author and preacher, which I wouldn’t normally read an interview about this, but her topic was on rest. And so of course I was like, Oh, we’re talking about that. Let’s see what she has to say. And she talked about how The Sabbath was essentially forced rest to get people out of the hamster wheel of capitalism.

And I thought that was really interesting. I like that idea of at least having one day a week that is, you know, work-free time and just kind of having, maybe some time in people’s lives… because you can’t do everything every day, right? You can’t focus on getting, your sensory rest and your creative rest.

Like if you try and do all that all in one day, like we just don’t have

[00:18:03] Sarah: Yeah. Then you’ll have no physical rest. , you’re like, I have so many ways I need to rest.

[00:18:09] Pam: I’m so tired of rest. Yeah, but I like this idea of maybe taking like a dedicated time during the week when you do focus on these practices.

Like, obviously, there’s things that you can do throughout the week to have an impact and to just be mindful of these different things that are affecting how you’re feeling. But I like that idea of having like maybe a weekend day or a day off or something where you do a digital detox or you spend more time outdoors or it’s, it’s something that you just sort of like make it, this is the time when I’m focusing on this rest specifically.

[00:18:43] Sarah: Uh, yes. I, I love that. And I love the idea of a digital detox. And we do have some friends who do that weekly and swear by it.

[00:18:53] Pam: Let’s talk about some of the ways that people can focus on these different types of rests if they are able to set aside some time for it.

[00:19:00] Sarah: Great. Let’s start with physical rest? So first of all, why may you choose to, because again, let’s start by, by framing this with the understanding that you get to pick if you want to, the choice is yours. You’re always at choice. Do you want to focus on replenishing, restoring yourself in one or more of these areas?

Don’t need to do it all.

[00:19:26] Pam: It’s really like awareness of the potential areas where you could focus on. Like just because you get a high score on a quiz doesn’t mean you have to do this, right? It’s here are some options, here are some things that you can think about, take what works for you, take what makes sense for you and what you think that you need to focus on and go with that.

[00:19:48] Sarah: So with that said, uh, physical rest, you might want to focus on physical rest if you get a high score on your physical rest and you think, wow, I’m tired all the time, right? So that’s the obvious one. You notice you’re tired. I also thought it was interesting and astute how she mentioned noticing if you’re having physical symptoms that indicate that you need more physical rest. So, for example, back spasms, back pain, headaches… certain symptoms that are going on in your body that could be an indication that your body is tired. And I know that happens with me, with my shoulders and headache. When I get tired, that will be one of the first things to switch and let me know.

If you notice that you want to focus on physical rest, how do you do that? Well, number one is get some more sleep. For more info on that, check out our most recent episode, where we, uh, dived into that topic. And really think about other restorative ways that you can ease your muscle tension. So, stretching, foam rolling, which I’m a huge fan of. Uh, yoga, walking, uh, anything you can do, like just getting to know yourself and your body.

What can you do to help, uh, calm and soothe your physical body?

[00:21:10] Pam: I love just like a 10 minute chill session. Like in the afternoon, if I’ve had a stressful day and I’m feeling tired and I’ve got more work that I need to do and I don’t have time for a nap. Just literally laying down on the couch or, sitting somewhere comfortable and closing my eyes for 10 minutes and just having quiet.

There’s something about having the closed eye relaxation, even if you’re still awake, that is a huge boost. It’s a, it’s definitely a great way to get some of that physical rest kind of in the middle of the day.

[00:21:39] Sarah: I agree. And I do that too. Sometimes just, yeah, exactly. Lie down the body, close my eyes. And usually I’ll turn my alarm on, on my phone just to make sure that, cause then I can allow myself to really relax. Otherwise I’m like, my gosh, when’s my meeting?

And you’re right. Just 10 or 20 minutes of closing your eyes and letting your body shut down can really help.

Okay. Mental rest.

[00:22:04] Pam: We talked about mental rest a little bit in the sleep episode, because there is so much of that that happens when you try and go to sleep and your brain just all of a sudden is like, Hey, here’s all of the ideas and everything that you forgot to do today and whatnot. So, that is definitely something that we want to focus on not only just for like happiness throughout the day, but for helping with that physical rest. Like, going again, going back to how this is all kind of related.

So if you do feel like you have anxiety, that busy brain when you’re trying to sleep, if you have trouble concentrating, if you find that you aren’t having as good of like memory or recall, those can be indications that you want to focus on mental rest.

So some of the ways that you can do this are meditation, breathing exercises. Sarah’s talked before about how she really likes the box breathing method where you’re doing a four count in, hold for four, release for four, hold for four. Uh, that’s a great way to quiet your mind because you’re focusing on the count of the breath while you’re getting the benefit of the breath.

Other ways that you could get this mental rest is with calming music, journaling, I would even bring in some of the social interaction here, maybe having a conversation with a friend, releasing something that is bothering you, talking to a trusted person and, and kind of letting out whatever maybe bothering you.

Maybe that’s therapy. Maybe your mental rest is getting a therapist and having someone to talk to about what is going on in your brain.

[00:23:39] Sarah: Thanks for laying out all those options. And what comes up for me when you say that is a reminder that this is why the self awareness piece is so great. You can get some data from doing a test like this or considering the different areas yourself. And if you realize, Oh, this part of my life is depleted right now.

Then you tap into yourself and say, well, what, what helps me? What helps me calm my mind? Some people love talking it out with a therapist. For other people that’s not what they want or need. Some people love meditation. For other people that’s not what they want or they need. Maybe it’s journaling. Maybe it’s art.

Again, it’s about investing the time to know if that’s something you want to work on. Okay. Well, what are the tools I’m going to reach for now?

Okay, great. Now let’s talk about sensory. So Pam and I already talked a bit about how overstimulation from sensory inputs in our life can really impact us. So you know that you are overstimulated by, by this if you’re feeling overwhelmed and almost like you’re buzzing, like you’re buzzing by all of this information that you’re taking in.

And sometimes I’ll feel that way. I’ll start the day feeling completely open, completely energized. And by the end of the day, it’s almost this feeling of irritability. And the noise… I don’t want to hear anyone talk. And sometimes that will happen at the dinner table and nobody’s yelling. People are just sharing their stories, perhaps with some enthusiasm, which they should.

And I’m like shh shh. It feels too much for me. Like, I don’t just speak more quietly. Right? Or I’ll notice that. My husband loves music. I also appreciate and enjoy music. But I would say he could probably have music on all the time and it wouldn’t bother. I should fact check that with him. But in general, I know that it bothers me more often that it bothers him.

I’m just like, well, I’d rather have quiet. Whereas he would rather probably for him, it’s that creative rest, right? Of he hears the music, he appreciates it. He loves it. It’s fulfilling him in a certain way. Whereas for me, I need more of that sensory rest, uh, the downtime and the quiet escape.

[00:26:04] Pam: How do you deal with that at dinner?

[00:26:06] Sarah: Well, I just sometimes ask people to speak more quietly and to take turns. It also becomes an opportunity to work on our communication skills. And remember, interrupting is not cool. We have to let everyone finish their stories, right? So that’s it. We don’t listen to music generally during dinner. So it’s just the conversations. And with the music, sometimes I’ll ask can we turn it off, even though I feel like a party pooper? Like, I know it’s a beautiful song, but I, I can’t listen to it anymore. So I’ll ask to turn it off. Sometimes my husband will put in headphones. He’ll watch TV with headphones as well, or he’ll just listen with headphones.


[00:26:48] Pam: I definitely get the same thing where if I have a day where I’m, overstimulated for whatever reason, if I’ve had, tons of meetings, so I’ve had a lot of input or if we are at someone else’s house, so there’s kids and music and noise and things that I’m not used to.

Or if we have to go maybe like into a city or something. And so there’s traffic noise and like all of that. Like I, that definitely starts to make me feel that. And I can feel it physically, but I also feel it like my brain just shuts down. Like I get to a point where I’m just like, I can’t have anymore. And I have to just excuse myself and not be around people or noise or I, put in my headphones and I’ll put on something that is calming for me. So, and , I’m, I’m sitting here realizing I have this with physical sensations as well.

[00:27:40] Sarah: Hmm.

[00:27:41] Pam: So, I will once in a while, like, get partially through a day and I feel like I’m getting grumpy and I’m like, what, like, why am I moody?

Like, I’m fed, I’m rested, like, what’s going on? And I’ll realize that maybe like I’m wearing a sports bra that’s too tight and it is irritating my shoulders and I get that thing off and then immediately feel better. So like our bodies are. Responding to anything that is stimulating them from all sources at any time.

And it can definitely impact how you’re feeling.

[00:28:11] Sarah: Yes. Okay. So what’s our takeaway? Notice. Notice when you need some sensory rest and take a break. As simple as that. And I love that you’re like, I’ve got my blindfold, I’ve got my eye, what’s it called? Eye, eye, eye mask, eye cover. What do you sleep with?

[00:28:30] Pam: Well, CK does, uh, he has his sleep phones, which cover his eyes. I don’t do any eye cover, but I do uh, wax earplugs. So I can’t hear

[00:28:37] Sarah: So, whatever, whatever tools you need, whether it’s covering your eyes, covering your ears, right? Getting the most comfortable thing for your skin. Leaving a space and giving yourself however much time you need or can afford to reset, really taking, taking that seriously because really we, we’re getting too much stimulus, like way more than we did in any generation. I mean, even the amount of information we’re getting from the screens.

I’ve noticed I typically don’t do Zoom meetings until the afternoon, but there’s some groups that I, some of my colleagues are in Europe. So we often end up meeting at 9am my time and I love meeting them. Otherwise, I, I wouldn’t do it because I don’t enjoy a 9am Zoom.

Like I, I notice it for the whole rest of the day. Right. Anyways, sometimes we have to, right? We have to, and, and that’s fine, but just knowing the impact, it’s not that I regret doing it. It’s just, I know this is going to impact me, so what can I do to support myself before and after I get sort of that sensory charge first thing in the morning, because I know that I do have that sensitivity.

Okay, cool. Sensory rest, everybody. Get some. Get some today if you need it.

Next up, creative rest, right? Why might you choose to invest in your creative rest? Uh, this is interesting. Uh, you might choose to invest in your creative rest if you notice that you are having a hard time brainstorming, solving problems, being creative, and innovative. Because this can be an indication that you are tapped out. You’ve, you’ve utilized all of those decision making creative abilities, living life and doing all the hard work you have to do in your work and life. So once that happens, your resources have been depleted. And one way you can help replenish them is by this concept of creative rest.

So you can replenish them by kind of filling up your own creative cup, your own cup of awe and wonder, if you will, by looking at beautiful things in the world, whatever you find beautiful. Whether that’s nature made or human made.

[00:30:59] Pam: I feel like I’m trying to optimize rest here, but I keep thinking about ways that like all of these things can relate to each other and how you can get, all the rest that you need and in one, in one go, but, but you could really, go for a walk, a restorative walk while listening to something that is soothing and experiencing nature and awe.

[00:31:23] Sarah: yeah. And then stop in the park and have a nap. Have a nap in nature.

[00:31:30] Pam: You, too, can be fully restored in one hour! But you can, you can, right? These are, these are things that they kind of can, can, uh, relate to one another. And I, for me, taking a walk outside is extremely restorative because of the sun and the fresh air and also, looking at the birds and the plants and having that that change in sensory experience where I’m not staring at a screen anymore. I’m getting much more natural input.

[00:31:57] Sarah: Yes, and I want to also spend a minute or two thinking about the word creativity as an antidote to consumption. Because when we’re on screens or we’re listening, we’re consuming, consuming, consuming. Creativity is the antidote, and creativity is deeply fulfilling. And sometimes when we grow up, we think, I’m not creative, I’m not artistic. And yet most individuals really feel good when they find some kind of creative project with their hands.

Right? Whether that’s painting, drawing, even, adult coloring books, which I find so funny because it’s just a coloring book yet people feel better doing it because it says adult on it. But like coloring pages or like I got sticker by numbers of different dogs. And so it’s this big page with all these different dogs and like a hundred and whatever stickers per page.

And it’s fun. It’s very fun. Same, the same kind of feeling some people have when they’re baking or cooking or beading or any kinds of arts and crafts, cutting things. So if you feel like that part of you is no longer alive, consider this a reminder that it’s not too old. You don’t have to be quote unquote good at it.

You can get a really simple art kit and, or a couple of supplies and, spend 10, 15 minutes, 20 minutes and just see how you feel after it.

[00:33:31] Pam: My best ideas come when I’m doing something like taking a shower or taking a walk or drawing, something like that, where, where part of your brain is occupied by something else, but you’re away from all of the stimulation and the consumption that you were just talking about.

It frees up that part of your brain to have creative thoughts, and to feel expansive. Instead of that contraction that we have when we’re just consuming.

[00:34:02] Sarah: Yes. And this is making me think, oh, I’d love to do a couple of episodes on creativity and different ways to boost our creativity and express ourselves creatively.

All right, next up is emotional rest.

[00:34:16] Pam: We talked a little bit about emotional rest at the beginning about how people pleasing is related to that. And this feeling of not being emotionally authentic and not being able to express how you’re really feeling, maybe keeping things to yourself that you really wish that you could be sharing.

Some of the symptoms if you’re suffering from an emotional rest deficit may be that feeling that you always have to keep your emotions in check. You can never express anything outside of some guardrails. You can’t be upset or too happy. Maybe you can’t have any of that greater expression of emotions. Or you never have the feeling that you have the freedom to be truly authentic about what you’re feeling. All of that falls under people pleasing, right? That you don’t want to come across as too, too much. You don’t want to be upset…

[00:35:08] Sarah: yeah, you don’t want to be seen as a complainer.

[00:35:11] Pam: You don’t want to be a problem.


[00:35:14] Sarah: Yeah, but we all have problems, and we all need to talk about them.

[00:35:18] Pam: Yep. So having someone that you can talk to about your feelings openly having some sort of space where you can freely express yourself is, is one way that you can deal with having an emotional rest deficit. I think that a lot of this will come down to having the awareness that this is an issue for you and building the courage to express your self and to be vulnerable.

[00:35:46] Sarah: Very much so. There’s a lot of courage involved in being vulnerable, and in also having boundaries, and in also asking for connection. Right? And building that connection. So this one isn’t a one and done thing. Yet, I’m really glad that she has it as part of her whole framework, because I think it’s…. really is like when you think about when you’re holding on to that sort of what she calls like emotional labor or emotional weight, it is very heavy. So how do we rest if we’re holding that? And then that feeling of, oh, wow, like I just, opened up to someone. It’s like,

it really is like a physical, a physical, uh, release that happens with that emotional rest.

[00:36:35] Pam: I was just listening to an interview with an author who has an upcoming book about super communicators. And he was talking about how vulnerability is something that humans can’t resist when they see it. So we, we love seeing or hearing people be vulnerable because innately, it signals that the topic is important, because if someone is opening up and being vulnerable, it’s either because they are in danger, so we need to help them, or sadly, it’s because they’re weak, so we can exploit them.

So it, it piques our interest. So, having that knowledge that yes, it’s scary, and it can be hard to express yourself, but vulnerability is something that will be appreciated by the right audience, I think is really important. And it’s making me think about the episode that we did on the book, Permission to Speak, and how we talked about how being fully authentic in who you are will, make people appreciate your message more and will connect with you more and will reciprocate and be more open to you as well.

So even though it feels difficult and it is scary, no matter what, no matter who you’re talking to, being vulnerable is scary, but finding the, the people or the place or the therapist or whatever that is, wherever you can be open, I think is, is really important and it’s rewarding and it’ll pay off.

[00:38:10] Sarah: Great advice. Excellent. So next up, we have social rest. Again, this has to do with finding the right people. And by right, I mean, the people who bring out the best in you. So it’s not to say that folks who don’t bring out the best in you are necessarily quote unquote, bad people. It just means that the impact that they have on you is such that like, You’re, you’re giving, you’re giving, you’re giving, and maybe you’re not receiving what you need.

So sometimes within work relationships, within family dynamics, within friend groups, this can happen. Often it can be unintentional. Again, people don’t necessarily want it to be that way, yet relationships can unfold in such a manner.

[00:38:56] Pam: Over the last few years, I went through a process of really paring down my friendships. We used to have a really big friendship circle and I quit drinking alcohol a few years ago and very quickly realized that there was a lot of people that I had spent quite a bit of time around that I didn’t enjoy being around sober.

And I found that the relationships were just really draining. We would go to brunch and I would come home and I would be like, I’m exhausted. That wasn’t fun. It didn’t fill me up. It didn’t make me feel better after spending time with them. So I think that, really focusing on the people that make you feel fulfilled, the ones that you can have interesting conversations with rather than gossiping for an hour.

The, the people that, That you really just feel embraced by and supported by and fulfilled when you spend time with them. Focusing on those relationships and quality over quantity.

[00:39:53] Sarah: Yeah. And I feel, I feel very touched by what you’re saying because I recognize that sometimes that’s, that’s building new relationships or it’s investing in certain relationships that may not be primary in your life or it’s building new relationships. Right? So there’s also a vulnerability and a courage that goes into that and also a lot of stuff around making new friends at different ages and capacity to do that and, and all that jazz.

So I’m glad that we’re talking about this right now and I recognize that this too is a journey for a lot of us and I think it’s so worthwhile and I think it’s so great. I think I have certain friendships that I’ve made in my forties that are so meaningful for me.

So just a word of encouragement for anyone who’s listening who might feel depleted in this area and might resonate with what you’re saying, Pam, about, oh, wow, I noticed this group of friends or some individuals within the group I wasn’t actually feeling great after these interactions.

If that resonates for you, don’t lose hope and notice that without judgment and then really stay open to finding and nurturing and cultivating the relationships that do feel good.

[00:41:06] Pam: Yeah. And maybe you can find some of those relationships through your spiritual rest activities, which is the next section.

[00:41:14] Sarah: Beautiful segue. Spiritual rest. So we mentioned earlier that this isn’t necessarily about religion specifically but this is about This is about a sense of meaning and purpose. And this is actually, let me look down. This was my highest score yeah. I did quite well with spiritual arrest and I’m not surprised because I derive a lot of meaning out of my work.

[00:41:41] Pam: You mean it was

[00:41:41] Sarah: it was my lowest score, which means it was. My, my, my best, my best, my most rested, my most rested and, and a sense of personal fulfillment and connection with… I mean, I do have a meditation practice. I do feel very connected to a higher sense of purpose and meaning in my work and in my relationships, uh, and in my way of thinking.

So this one I scored very high in how about you?

[00:42:11] Pam: I also did with social and spiritual, those were both my best which, again, my initial thoughts around it being related to religion. It didn’t really make sense to me. But in learning about that, it’s really more about purpose and and, and I’m also, a hermit who doesn’t engage with community very much.

So it was interesting to me, but I think that the, the point there is that it’s what feels good to you. So the level of connection that I need is lower than what some other people need. So I score very well there because I have enough of it. I’m, I’m fulfilled enough there with the limited amount I have.

[00:42:49] Sarah: Yeah. And also you’re very clear on the quality and type of connection that you want to have. The types of conversations and interactions you want to have.

[00:42:57] Pam: So one of the things to think about to, to see if you want to focus on spiritual rest is if you have something in your life that feels like it’s significant. A lot of people, they go to their job and that feels like just a grind and they’re not making any difference or progress anywhere.

They’re not impacting anyone positively anywhere in the world. You kind of feel that burnout. You just kind of feel like you don’t have any purpose. And so if you’re feeling that then this may be something that you want to put some effort into.

Even though I scored well here, I’m kind of at that point in my life where I’m starting to think about how I can more positively impact the world and at least leave a little bit of a positive mark.

And so one of the things that I’ve done recently is I’m considering volunteering with a program where you’re actually like a community advocate for children who are going through the court system, which is not something that I would ever have considered doing in the past. I’m not a kid person. I’m not a…

I’m not the type of person that really volunteers for these activities, but for some reason, when I heard about that program, it was so heartbreaking to me that there were kids in the court system that needed an adult to help them navigate it. So, it called to me. So, just keep your eye out for things like that, that, that feel meaningful and that you can maybe incorporate into your life to have a little bit more of that purpose if you’re not getting it from family or work.

[00:44:24] Sarah: Stay open. And, and I, I love that. I didn’t know you were thinking of doing that. And volunteering is a great way for many people to get that sense of, of, purpose and fulfillment and actually make a contribution, like do something positive. So certainly so many great causes to support.

[00:44:46] Pam: All right, so we will link to the TEDx talk and the quiz in the show notes so you can take it and let us know what areas you scored high in, what areas you need some help with, and what ideas you have for how people can get rest.

[00:45:01] Sarah: Wishing you lots of rest in all the areas.


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