How much rest do you need?

Sunset—Ixtapa, Mexico

I mentioned last week that my family and I had travelled to Mexico. On the heels of a snowy winter, the warm temperatures thawed and cheered us. For the first few days, we ran from hot sand to cool sea and back again. Our adult children jumped waves like they did when they were little. On the fourth night or maybe the fifth (how does time both expand and contract on vacation?) our delight softened. Maybe it was the sting of sunburn or impossible-to-remove sand in our shoes. After a disagreement about where to eat dinner, I finally caught on.

A familiar ennui had descended. The novelty of the new locale gave way to slight dissatisfaction about the things that had delighted us days before. Think about small children who cry at 2 o’clock in the afternoon at Disneyland. This happens to adults too on vacation, retreat, or prolonged rest.

What is the right measure of work and rest?

As much as we daydream about escaping the cold weather and our occupations, leisure can turn stale too.

Because I see everything lately through the lens of midlife, I’ve been reflecting on the years that I lived, worked, and parented younger children at an intensity that felt unwieldy. I’m grateful that I no longer want (or need) to run around as though everyone’s lives depend on me. Still I find myself wondering: what is the right amount of work for me? And what is the right measure of rest? How can I be more conscientious about bringing both into the everyday?

Appreciating each. . .

Don’t get me wrong: my family and I are still enjoying Mexico and our time together! And these restful days have turned up my excitement for our upcoming Wisdom Circle for Midlife Women. If you have the time and interest, come along. I created this circle as an invitation to reflect, feel the support of other women, and consider what balance of work and rest may be calling to you now. Our first gathering is next week—Thursday, March 16. Check out the details here. I look forward to meeting you!

Published by Lisa

Writer, observer of culture, careful listener, & founder of

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