Wednesday, October 04, 2023 | Rabi' al-awwal 18, 1445 H
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3 misconceptions about rest that are not true


Vanessa Seymour -

I was recently interviewed about my views on rest and it got me thinking about all the misconceptions we hold regarding rest. Rest can mean so many different things. It can be a physical or mental state of being or a combination of both.

For a long time, we have tried to connect rest to work. If we are working hard we cannot be resting and if we are resting it means we are not hard workers. This way of thinking has put pressure on many people to push their bodies to extremes it was not made for. It’s time we start readdressing our values.

Here are 3 misconceptions regarding rest that we need to do away with.

1. Rest needs to be earned

This is an old patriarchal way of thinking that needs to be addressed. When we think of rest as something that we need to earn, there is a lot of pressure on working to earn it. The problem with this is that we disconnect from our bodies and minds. Instead of resting when we desire or need it we learn to push through until we feel we have earned it. A lot of the time this means we overwork ourselves -- the cause of the unrealistic standards we set.

Rest is a necessity of human experience. It is not something you have to prove that you deserve. You have a right to it just by existing. Once you realise this you take back control of your body and mind. You realise how important it is to nurture and care for yourself. You need to rest to survive just as much as you need to work.

2. Hard work equals success. If we are resting it means we are not working hard.

This belief can be detrimental to our health and wellbeing. We tie success to the amount we work. When we do this we stop valuing everything else that life has to offer. Life is about so much more than your career or business. Working hard means nothing if you don’t have your mental and physical health. Success is about so much more than just work.

Rest is not the enemy. When we equate not working to not being successful we start a very unhealthy cycle. Resting does not mean your work is not good. In fact, sometimes, rest might equal more productive work. Rest has nothing to do with how successful we are. Success can be measured in so many ways and we need to open our minds to all those possibilities. We need to consider what it is we value and if we value it for the right reasons.

3. We compare how we rest to the person next to us and use that to determine who is a better person.

The reason we do this is we are measuring being a good person to how much some work. The more you rest, the less you work, therefore you are not as successful, and not as good as that person. This belief put so much pressure on people to be constantly working and comparing themselves to others.

What the person next to you is doing or achieving says nothing about the kind of person you are. Stop holding yourself to someone else’s expectations. If we want to truly reach our own potential we need to realise that we are all different. This is a good thing. The faster we stop comparing ourselves to other people, the faster we are going to become who we are meant to be.

Remember, rest is not bad. We’ve just lived in a world that has become so focused on accomplishment and forgotten the value of health and happiness. Rest is needed for a healthy and fulfilling life. Stop putting pressure on yourself to be working 24 hours a day. That is not a healthy or sustainable long-term plan. Start focusing on what your body and mind need as well, and do not feel guilty when you give it to yourself.

The author is a is a Business and Mindset Coach who works with entrepreneurs on all things business strategy and energetics. Contact details:,; Instagram: @vanessa.seymour

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