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  • Writer's pictureSarah Rivera

Rest, Re-center & Re-focus

Christmas is almost here and many of us are busy rushing around, reconnecting with friends and family, and trying to keep up with daily life on top of it all. As a child, this time of year was filled with magic and wonder. As an adult, I have to work harder to capture that wonder. I worry about getting everyone that special gift. I stress about the logistics of family get togethers. I wonder if this year will be just as magical for my children as previous years.

As if that wasn't enough, my brain then kicks into creating a January To Do List. You know, eat better, go to the gym, lose weight, make promises to myself that I won't keep. Then the frustration and negative self-talk will come after I don't make said goals and the year will pick up it's familiar rhythm.

What if I decided not to do that to myself this year? I have to give credit to my little mare, Mercy, for this realization.

Typically, I try to exercise Mercy a few times a week. She's a thoroughbred and, in the past, has needed to move to help balance her energy out. Only things have been different this last month or so. Her pasture mate has had some medical issues lately and I've watched her support him in her own way. She seems more centered. Like she knows he needs her right now and she has taken on that weight. I've been very reluctant to separate them. The work she is doing is something I respect. It may not look like much from the outside, but I know these two. He has been her support for the past three years. Sometimes they have fought like an old married couple and this isn't the first time he's had a medical issue. This one is just different.

Instead of taking advantage of him, she stands with him. When he can't walk far, she sticks close. I come into their pasture to say hello and spend time, but she seems to know that he is still her focus right now. Thankfully, he seems to be doing better, but it got me thinking.

When do I plan to rest to support myself? I get the desire to start something fresh in the New Year: new goals, new habits, new me. It just never works out that way. What if I planned to rest?

How many of us are exhausted after the holidays only to throw ourselves into doubling down on a New Years promise we know we can't keep? What would happen if we took a month of rest and gave our bodies, minds, and souls the space they need to recover? How would our year go if we gave ourselves time to re-center? Would re-focusing on our goals be more successful after we allowed ourselves time to recuperate?

We can use January to launch our New Year, but by using it to be compassionate with ourselves and giving ourselves the gift of rest. February will be here soon enough. Let's welcome it with renewed spirits, re-focused minds, and refreshed souls.

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