Good morning! and it is a good morning sun is shining and birds are singing etc, etc, I realised that I spend so much time talking about pushing boundaries and how the body only responds to stress beyond it’s normal capability that I felt I needed to speak a little about the importance of rest and I don’t mean just sleep (although sleep is awesome).
I mean more specifically resting your body and mind, sounds a bit spiritually fanciful I know but hear me out, Evolution is a long process and we are just starting to catch up with the technology revolution, this can be seen in the generational gaps that we observe and are often the subject of good-hearted jokes and routines of stand-up comedians, each generation becomes more comfortable with technology such as phones, home media, home automation and so on, but it does not stop there, you see the world has become virtual almost overnight, it really was not that long ago, maybe 20 years or so when we didn’t have 24/7/365 news feeds, social media updates, whatsapp and high resolution games featuring cute cartoon cats bursting bubbles all at our finger tips.
And all the time our bodies are still running on the circadian rhythm of wake / rest, so we start to feel tired and sluggish as we push through yet another phase of our cycle in order to watch the 20th video on how to become a billionaire by the time you are five, or how to lift like a strongman after only two days training, or indeed typing out a blog about all the above!
As this diagram courtesy of Wikipedia demonstrates perfectly there is an order to things and I can see several points on it that I merrily sail through, now the reason behind this post is I emphatically advocate pushing boundaries and we cannot accomplish the things we do by sticking to a set of rules that limit us to a time scale our bodies developed before Instagram and Clickbank, but there are some things the body and mind need us to listen too, these are the instincts that tell us when we have pushed too far, take the gym for instance, you go there to hurt, your muscles burn you are sweating like you are in the desert, breathing like an asthmatic camel and running periodically to the door to be sick, this is good, this what we came here for, but when you start to feel faint or dizzy that is when to stop because you have gone too far, and too far is destructive we are now longer pushing boundaries smashing them and ripping up the foundation as we go.
And why is this on “Practice the Preaching” ? well because I want everybody to succeed and we get bombarded by people everyday telling us that if we are not in the gym 6 hrs a day we are not trying hard enough, if we are not up all night coding and sleeping through the day we clearly do not want our website to be a success, and we deserve to fail, problem is that message contradicts the following advice that success takes time to accomplish and it is persistence that pays off, you cannot persist at something if you take yourself out of the game by injuring yourself physically or mentally.
So listen to your body and mind, the clues will all be there and regardless of schedules and training routines take a dive when you need to, as long as you are honest with yourself it will not be very often, so you will not lose ground the only thing that will hurt is your pride, but don’t worry that will get better when you reach your goal quicker than you would if you had to take a week or a month break due to over stretching it.
Things to watch for
- Over tired and irritable and an inability to sleep soundly
- Dizziness when exercising or a feeling of pressure in the chest
- Inability to keep your focus on a screen or blurry vision
- Any pain that is outside of muscles, you don’t grow tendons!
- Short tempered or lack of patience
- Sudden lift in heart rate when resting or the feeling of panic
- Constant headaches that feel like you a have a tight hat on your head
In general when we are under constructive stress, sure we will feel tired and a bit stressed because we are striving, but once it goes beyond that it becomes toxic we are literally sowing the seeds of our own failure, so just stop sit back, go for a walk, read a book or something the polar opposite of what you were doing.