The Great Rest Survey with Rest Assured
‘Me time’, self-care, unwind, rest & relaxation or filling your cup; whatever we call it, apparently we’re not getting enough of it. According to a study* carried out by British bed manufacturer, Rest Assured, we’re getting an average of 40 minutes a day to ourselves. So, what do we do with that precious time and is it beneficial to our well-being?
This year, for the first time in my adult-life and motherhood, I started to actively focus on myself and how I energise my very being. With the bigger boys away for three weeks in the summer, with their grandparents in the US, I didn’t adhere to my usual MO of creating a mammoth to-do list, piling on the DIY chores and envisaging the work I’d get done in their absence. Instead I signed myself up for yoga in a yurt; took a writing course; indulged in afternoon naps; soaked in candle-lit baths; read a book and luxuriated in an aromatherapy massage.
I also made the monumental decision to update/upgrade our bed and mattress – after all, what’s the point in feeling relaxed, if you’re not well rested? As you can see from the pics, I partnered with Rest Assured, who kindly sent us a gorgeous bed, upholstered in a soft Pebble coloured wool effect fabric (with a fab ottoman base to stash all my shoes!) and their luxury Berwick Handmade Mattress from their Naturals collection. Oh and did I mention – it contains cashmere!
I was raised with ethea “You can’t sit down when there’s work to be done” and “If you’re going up the stairs, take something with you”. While I’ve benefitted from the cart-horse work-ethic instilled in me, in 2018 I may well have completed all the chores – even made it to the elusive void at the bottom of the laundry basket – and taken all the things up the stairs, but there’s still more and more to be ‘done’. Our online presence, apps and mobile devices mean we’re never truly shutting off and recharging our batteries.
“40 per cent of British people blamed mobile phone usage for their lack of rest, while 39 per cent said they were spending time doing personal admin.”
– Rest Assured R&R Survey*
The Glorification of Busy
The do-it-all, have-it-all mentality of decades gone by massively impacted my early days of motherhood. I believed I had to have a perpetually happy child who enjoyed playing with wooden toys while eating their macrobiotic lentil sticks; have a pristine home where dust was non-existent and lavender invaded your nostrils; bake enough baked goods to rival the GBBO final; all while having Pinterest worthy hair and squeezing in a pilates class. I’m exhausted just thinking about that, let alone trying to live it.
“One in three people are constantly in a grumpy mood when they aren’t well-rested, while 34 per cent admit to arguments at home and 30 per cent feel lethargic.”*
The outdated mentality – the glorification of busy – fuelled my depression, marred my early motherhood experience, affected my parenting and ultimately chipped away at my marriage.
Dipti Tait, Relaxation Teacher & Hypnotherapist at The Cotswold Practice says, “It is very important for us to learn and practice the skill of relaxation to get useful neurochemistry, like serotonin, dopamine and oxytocin fuelling us, which makes our lives much more happy, clearer and peaceful.”
11 years on, I’ve finally learnt that in order to be the best mother I can be – take care of my children’s’ needs, look after my home and nurture my relationship – I need that perhaps cheesy and overused phrase, ‘Me Time’. Self-care, isn’t Selfish, it’s self-preservation.
After just a few weeks of practicing yoga (yurt is optional), listening to an audio book and just taking the time to sit and observe the sky, I felt the shift. Add to this that our bedroom now looks and feels like a boutique retreat thanks to the swanky new bed and mood-lifting mattress from Rest Assured – so I’ve been getting a better night’s sleep that I have done in years. I’ve been more present for the boys, had more patience for their questions and demands for snacks, had more energy to engage with them and oddly, felt as though I have more time.
So, what are you waiting for? Rest Assured have revealed the top 20 ways us Brits like to unwind and de-stress – pick a few and get relaxing!
- Go shopping
- Spend time with animals
- Go on a long walk
- Walk on the beach
- Listen to music
- Play a board game
- Listen to a podcast
- Sitting still and doing nothing
- Learn a new skill
- Practice aromatherapy
- Go for a drive in the car
- Have a bath
- Give up technology for a period of time
- Watch the sunrise
This post has been sponsored by Rest Assured who also kindly gifted the featured bed, consisting of their luxurious natural Berwick Cashmere Mattress, wool effect upholstered divan base (Pebble) and wool effect upholstered Lyon headboard (in Pebble).
*The research of 2,000 UK adults aged 18+, commissioned by British bed maker Rest Assured.