The 7 Types of Rest that Every Person Needs

The 7 Types of Rest that Every Person Needs

When we think about Rest, the first thing that usually springs to mind is Sleep But Rest is much more than this! If you have ever found yourself getting plenty of good quality sleep, but still feeling drained or exhausted…then perhaps you need to attend to a different type of rest?


According to physician, researcher and author Saundra Dalton-Smith, there are 7 key areas of our lives that we need to be paying attention to when it comes to Rest (Rest = Restoration!). See below for a summary of the types and suggestions to satisfy each;


The first type is Physical. This can be both passive (sleeping / napping) and active (restorative activities such as yoga, stretching, massage).


Type 2 – Mental. Gosh I am sure that we have all found at points during this pandemic that we lack clarity, become forgetful and find it hard to concentrate! Short breaks throughout the day, keeping hydrated and having a notepad by the bed to do a ‘brain dump’ of anything on your mind can help. 


Type 3 – Sensory. Our senses can become overwhelmed by all the external stimulus; think computer screens, bright artificial lighting, tv, radio, back to back calls / meetings using various technologies……. Suggestions for countering this include closing your eyes for 1 minute (perhaps with hands over your eyes), softening the focus of your gaze (meditation can help here too) and turning off technologies at the end of the day.


Type 4 – Creative. This type is about awakening creativity within us. Getting into nature or immersing yourself in the arts are just 2 ways to reignite passion and wonder; which in turn can help you to come up with innovative ideas and find solutions.


Type 5 – Emotional. Another which I know has been lacking for many over the last 9 months. This is about having time and space to express your feelings – but also to cut back on people pleasing (which can at times be draining). People may find this especially difficult as we often put our own needs at the bottom of the pile, feeling perhaps ‘selfish’ to think of ourselves ahead of our loved ones. Saying ‘No’ and expressing how we are feeling, can take courage and a certain amount of vulnerability. So being kind to ourselves is also important when focusing on this. 


Type 6 – Social. Is all about our relationships. Do you find yourself drained after being with, or talking with certain people? To experience more social rest surround yourself with positive and supportive people. Allocate an ‘end’ time rather than having open ended conversations with those that drain you – we can still be there for others, whilst not draining our battery to 0%!


Type 7 – Spiritual. This is about the ability to connect beyond the physical, mental and emotional; to feel a deeper sense of belonging, love, acceptance and purpose. How do we focus on this type? By engaging in something greater than yourself. This could be prayer, meditation or some kind of voluntary work (to name a few). 


Which of these are you satisfying currently? Are there any areas that need some more attention? 


Take good care of yourselves,


Laura x

1 Comment

  1. Ann Gurner on May 8, 2021 at 12:29 pm

    Thanks, I enjoyed this article. Hadn’t really thought of all those things as ‘rest’ before, although I do try to do a bit of most of them some of the time. Very useful, to have a reminder and all the different types in one article though.

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