Inhale !

For the past several weeks, social media has included several photos, links and/or articles about relaxation and rest.solitude image

Maybe it’s because we’re in the last part of the summer season and everyone is either on a vacation or thinking about one. Or maybe it’s because of the increasing stress in our world.

We all need a break, but women who are stressed out need even more than just an occasional vacation. We need to find a regular place of rest – where we can inhale, find peace and be restored.

If we don’t inhale, we can’t exhale. If we don’t fill up with joy and hope, then we can’t share those qualities with anyone else.

Abby Seixas, the author of “Finding the Deep River Within” calls this place the “Time-in.” She describes Time-in as:

• A time without interruption, distraction or multi-tasking
• A time spent by yourself and with yourself
• A time where the emphasis is on being with yourself more than doing the activity

When was the last time you just sat and did nothing? Or at least, you thought you were doing nothing.

What you were actually doing was inhaling, resting your spirit and silently building up defenses for the next exhale.

Maybe you didn’t realize it at the time, but without that time-in, you would have reacted to the next stress-filled moment with a less than satisfactory outcome. Tears, exhaustion, screaming – these are reactions that sometime happen when we need a time-in.

So how in the world do we find a time and a place to truly rest our souls?

We have to be intentional about it. Schedule a time on your calendar to get away. Then do it. Don’t talk yourself out of it through false guilt or lack of personal boundaries.

Find a place that is away from your stressful job, home or situation. If you need to hire a babysitter or a caregiver – then do it. You are worth it and you will feel better for it.

Initiate the help of a friend or a family member. Let someone else fix supper while you escape. Then one day, you can reciprocate for that friend and cook supper while she escapes.

Ask God to help you remember that He created you as a human being, not a robot. He knows that no matter what good things you’re doing – you need a restorative time-in.

Even Jesus rowed across the lake for some R & R. If He needed a break, then so do you.

© 2014 GateWay of Hope – The Helping Place for Hurting Women