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You are Like a Rubber Band

Updated: Nov 4, 2021

We all know the oxygen mask analogy for taking care of ourselves, right? If you’re on an airplane, and the oxygen mask light comes on, you always put yours on first before you put on your child’s because if you pass out, you’ll both die. Many professionals arguing the importance of self-care have used this as a metaphor, citing that if your mental, emotional, and physical energy levels are depleted, you will not be able to care well for your family. I don’t necessarily think this is a bad analogy, but I do have two problems with it: it’s over used and it’s a bit dramatic. My daughter came up with an analogy I thought was so much more helpful and I’ve been using it for the last couple of years.

When it comes to self-care, or what I like to think of simply as rest, we are all like rubber bands. We have some built in flexibility to walk through adversity and accomplish very specific tasks designed for us. But when we are stretched beyond our limits or we work too much outside of our gifting, we fray and eventually snap. And it hurts! Not only can it be painful for us, but the pieces can go flying and hit others, hurting them too. We need time to be restored back to our original design, and that means rest. And I don’t just mean sleep, I mean engaging in activities which restore us, body and soul, from the rush of everyday life.

You don’t have to look far to see what doctors and psychologists have to say about rest. In fact, we’ve probably all seen research that shows we need at least 8 hours of sleep a night for our bodies to fully recuperate, slowing down for a family meal improves family relationships and decreases drug use amongst teens, and having boundaries around work and personal time improves our mental health. But the Bible also has a lot to say about rest. God starts in Genesis 1, setting the example for Sabbath rest and He keeps going through Psalms, Proverbs and into the New Testament.

But how, in this crazy busy world, when I have to chauffeur all the kids to all the activities, go to church, go to Bible study, go to work, clean the house, cook dinner, get to the gym, walk the dog…? All the things, all the time. It’s simple, but not necessarily easy and we are going to practice this throughout the month of November as we lead up to the busiest season of the year.

The first step to resting is calming our minds. There are so many verses that talk about this, but three come to mind specifically, so here's your ACTION STEP for this week. Look up Matthew 6:30-34, I Peter 5:6-7, and Romans 12:1-2. Take a minute to read these verses in a couple of translations and compare them with one another. The overall message about anxiety is humbling ourselves to God’s plan and letting him replace our way of thinking with His. How can this change the way you think about the upcoming holiday season? As you start planning for Christmas, what changes do you need to make in your thinking? Write them down and post them somewhere you’ll see them regularly. Watch the video in the Facebook Group as I dive deeper into these passages and what it means to renew your mind. You can make a copy of the study to fill in or print here.

On Friday, I’ll be announcing an upcoming event to help you get a head start on rest, so stay tuned for more about that!

Need more help? Book a free Discovery Session here to find out how my Flourishing Home Framework can help your family flourish. Subscribe here to get your free guide “Ultimate ADHD Resource List”.

The content found on Flourishing Family Coaching’s website and blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding ADHD, anxiety, depression or any other medical conditions. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website or blog.

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