There’s a vicious cycle I’m witnessing amongst my Feast students.
They’re tired, as in sleepy tired, and they respond to their fatigue, generally, in one of two ways.
Some push through, live their lives from this depleted life, and feed their hunger for rest with food.
Others do nap, when they can, and then wake wracked with guilt. Their thoughts flood in:
“You’re so lazy.”
“You’ve gotten nothing done this afternoon.”
“Your husband/wife only needs 6 hours of sleep, what’s wrong with you?!”
And the shame spiral begins.
And to put a damper on the cacophony of mean voices within they eat.
So I’m asking:
When did it become a badge of honor to run on very little sleep?
When did the “glorification of busy” become part our cultural lexicon?
When did taking naps as adults become shameful?
When did “I’m tired” become an unsurprising response to “how are you?”?
Life certainly does not always accommodate our sleep ideals and some compromises must be made for infants and office hours, but where we can reclaim and luxuriate in rest we must. And we must do so without apology.
The simple fact is you are allowed to spend time in ways that aren’t traditionally considered ‘productive’.
And, time spent just being or resting is, in fact, productive.
Napping does not make you a lazy person. I repeat: napping does not make you a lazy person.
You’re allowed to need more sleep than the average person. Whatever that means.
You’re allowed to rest in the middle of the day.
You’re allowed to rest even if you just a weekend or a vacation or a full night’s sleep. You don’t have to earn it.
You’re allowed to lay down and close your eyes, while the sun is still up, without any guilt or shame.
If you find yourself eating as a way to avoid the rest you’re craving or as a way to silence your inner critic who bashes you for your laziness, consider embracing your unique needs for rest and see what happens.
You might just find yourself a bit more energized, a bit more at ease at the table, and yes, a bit more well-fed