“AAAARRRRGHHHH!!! Knock if off or so help me I’ll cancel Christmas forever!” Raise your hand if you’ve said that (or something like it). I know I have. The frazzled, burned out mom at Christmas seems like a cliche, but it’s common for a reason. Yet it shouldn’t be! The problem usually comes down to societal pressure and rampant mom-guilt that make us feel like we need to be doing alllllll the things. Instead, we should be making a conscious choice to embrace rest during this holiday season!
Your Health Needs It
Have you ever used your phone or computer so long between charges that it shuts down completely? That’s its way of telling you that it needs to recharge. Rest is how we recharge our batteries!
Your Physical Health
Some of the ways a lack of rest takes a toll on our health are obvious. We all know that when we’re exhausted we can end up sore, clumsy, and end up with headaches. It can also make us more likely to get sick. As if we need some help in the middle of cold and flu season, we end up running ourselves ragged and taking our body’s defenses down. Even the Mayo Clinic says, “Studies show that people who don’t get quality sleep or enough sleep are more likely to get sick after being exposed to a virus…”. We need to prioritize rest this holiday season
Your Mental Health
Grumpy. Irritable. Frazzled. Short-tempered. Weary. These all describe our mental state when we don’t get enough rest. It doesn’t just hurt our bodies, it hurts our minds, too. When we neglect ourselves we end up exhausted and moody. It’s also easy to start to feel depressed and/or anxious when we’re just plain worn out. We need to get enough rest so that we can be at peace and actually enjoy the holidays!
Your Soul Needs It
Have you ever noticed that when you keep pushing yourself to do more and more without a break, you get weary? I’m not talking about just a bit worn out, but absolutely weary to your core. Without time to rest we can start to feel it in our spirit.
Weariness Distracts Us
It’s easy to get busy during the holiday season. The problem is that when we’re rushed off our feet we can get distracted by everything we need to do and lose sight of what’s important. We forget to stay focused on the reason we celebrate. The less we rest the more likely we are to let things slide, and our focus on what matters tends to be at the top of that list!
Weariness Makes Us Pull Back
When you’re so tired that you have just reached your end, do you tend to draw close to God or pull back? I’m going to guess that for most of us, it’s the second option! Lack of rest can leave us so weary that spending time with God just feels like one more thing on the to do list, so we take it off the list to lighten our load. The problem is that the more we pull back, the more weary and worn out we feel.
Your Kids Need It
As moms, what we do impacts our kids. If we don’t take time to rest our kids can pay the price, too. I know the last thing any of us want is to hurt our kids, but not getting enough rest can do just that!
Resting Sets An Example
You know what they say, we should lead by example. When our kids see us prioritizing rest (especially during busy times like the holiday season), it teaches them to do the same thing. One day they will be adults with jobs and families of their own. Do we want them to learn that pushing themselves to the brink of exhaustion is the best way to live? Or do we want them to learn from our example that we need to balance work, family, and rest in our lives?
Resting Gives Them Time
Our busyness quickly turns into busy lives for our kids. When we rest our kids get the chance to rest, and that does them a world of good. Taking some things off of your plate means that your kids will have more time to play and enjoy their childhood. They have time to nap, or learn things at their own pace, or just play freely and explore. In the long run those will help our kids much more than doing every fun thing that someone suggests.
Make Time for Rest This Year
This holiday season, make the conscious choice to prioritize rest. Look at what you’ve got on your plate and see what you can take off of it so that you can choose rest over busyness. Do it for your family, so you can be the loving and compassionate mom you want to be. More importantly, do it for yourself so that you can stay healthy, happy, and at peace!