Give Yourselves a Day of Rest

couple cuddling
Photo: iStock

I think we can all agree that time is a seriously valuable commodity. I don't think I've ever met anyone who feels they have enough of it. And the older you get, the more valuable it becomes. You add work, then marriage, then eventually kids, and you have to cram it all into a frame of time that never changes. You just keep working with increasingly limited space. Which is why the idea of an entire day of rest might sound patently absurd. But it shouldn't.

Look, even God took a day to rest, and he created the whole universe. Seems like if anything is a schedule packer, it's universe creation. And what, you think you're better than God? Well, if you're an atheist you probably do. But nevertheless, you should still consider taking a full day of rest, as a couple, every week.

And when I say rest, I mean rest. No chores around the house, no answering emails, no nipping off for an hour just to get a little work done, not even a trip to the gym. I mean swinging from a hammock, watching sports or crappy weekend TV, barely getting your pulse rate above 50, rest. Trust me you need it. You need it as an individual and you need it as a couple.

We all need our brains to reset. And to do so, we need to step out of the frenetic pace of everyday life and experience a little quiet. I'd recommend tuning out social media as well, but one Herculean task at a time. The simple fact is that rest is when we finally hear ourselves. We allow our brains to meander and suddenly the things that really matter in life bubble to the surface.

And there's also the basic, physiological need for our bodies to recover. The many tasks of an average day cause stress, and stress causes tension. Our muscles literally tighten up, and to keep from having our bodies physically give out on us, we need to let those muscles relax. And we should relax with our partners. For one thing, so that there's no imbalance in terms of who gets the most rest. But also because it helps sync your brains to a single rhythm. And maintaining that rhythm is essential to a healthy relationship.

So on the seventh day, or sixth, or whatever, rest. Relax. Catch a movie, go for a stroll, sit in the park. Do anything to unplug from the demands of everyday life. Your body, mind, and relationship will be better for it.

For more guidance, try Lasting, a science-based app backed by The Nest dedicated to improving the health of your marriage or relationship.