|Posted on July 21, 2010 at 4:12 PM|
Ever watch a sleepy baby? She may lay down in the middle of an activity or cry till put to her bed, or show a temper. My daughter would lay down in the middle of the floor or put her head on her high chair tray in the middle of a meal and be sound asleep. It took some time for me to learn from her example.
What happened? The body recognized its need for rest and simply took it. What would happen if more of us took a rest or nap period when our boday asked for it? I can hear all the excuses now. But the truth is.....We would be healthier and more productive, that's what!
Many of us schedule long days and short nights, writing "to do" lists before going to bed instead of "got done" lists to remind us of our productivity and successes of the day. When we can't sleep we try "sleep aids,or watch tv or walk the house, thinking there must be something wrong that needs to be medicated to force sleep so we can get up and get busy again.
What is happening? Why can't we sleep? Why do we need aids? We have forgotten how to STOP! LOOK! and LISTEN!
Our society has taught us to work hard to earn a living and so we should. But we have neglected the lessons of moderation and healthy balance. Taking time for a meal, a rest, a conversation. Just sitting or reading or playing with our children is a healthy activity often crowded out by what an old author once called "The Tyrany of the Urgent." Our bodies require physical, emotional, nutritional and spiritual rest. If deprived, even a little each day, we slowly become depleted. Sleeplessness, headaches, nausea, impatience, signs of stress begin to rule our days and our nights.
What if we learn to listen to our bodies? For example, according to Dr. Mercola (www.mercola.com) "daily brushing and flossing may also help stave off diabetes." When we need to care for ourselves it has become easy to put it off till tomorrow. Eventually we get run down, catch a cold, have a headache or other symptom. Symptoms are the body's shout for attention. Usually what it needs is rest!
If you have followed my story, you know I continue to recover from a riding accident. Although I am back to work, I have to pay close attention to my body, what I eat and drink, how much I rest, what exercise helps or hinders---the messages my body gives me each day. Some days I schedule rest! The next day I work. Some days I do both! The more I am attune the healthier I get. When over doing it I may exhibit headaches, nausea and vomiting, hot flashes, excessive thirst, impatience or anger, irrational fear, anxiety, crying and pain. These are a variety of ways my body tells me to STOP, LOOK and LISTEN! Yep, just like when we learned to cross the street. Do any of these sound familiar?
To be able to cross the street of healthy daily living I have to STOP and determine my motive for the activity I am about to embark on. I have to LOOK at the possible consequences to my health of one choice or another (am I already tired or sore? do I need a meal? do I exhibit symptoms?) And I have to LISTEN--if I have negative symptoms I need to address the cause and generally it is lack of rest and so I must rest.
What about you? There is much more to this story. Stay tuned---to your own body! Check in again for updates! STOP, LOOK AND LISTEN.