It’s easy to get worn down as a leader in a regular year. Since the last couple of years have been far from regular, many leaders are weary, depleted and even exhausted. As a result, a break this summer is desperately needed for many leaders.
To up the stakes a bit more, as a leader, you are going to need more energy for the journey ahead. In a world that seems to be breaking down on so many levels, you will need to be ready to navigate more challenge and change come fall.
So, how are you approaching summer?
Deep rest is step number one. It needs to be high on the agenda for most ministry leaders. Camp and summer ministry leaders, you especially should reread this article in August!
Let me illustrate why deep rest is so important.
If your car lights have been left on for an extended period of time, a quick boost to recharge the depleted battery won’t work. The battery will need a slower and longer trickle charge to build back fresh energy and long-term reserve.
To put it another way, the quick boost of a two-week vacation may recharge you enough to get going again short term. However, if you are significantly depleted, there’s no shortcut that will restore you long term. You will need deeper and longer rest over time.the quick boost of a two-week vacation may recharge you enough to get going again short term. However, if you are significantly depleted, there’s no shortcut that will restore you long term. You will need deeper and longer rest… Click To Tweet
So let me ask, will your current summer plan give you deep rest over time?
Sometimes leaders plan vacations but later discover that the long days driving to spend a week on an air mattress in their in-law’s basement aren’t actually restful or restorative. This isn’t the summer to make this discovery.
Rest also doesn’t just mean time off. Rest can look different for different personality types and different stages of life/family. Be sure to book and plan time that will be restorative to you.Rest also doesn’t just mean time off. Rest can look different for different personality types and different stages of life/family. Be sure to book and plan time that will be restorative to you. Click To Tweet
Take extra time off if possible. It takes longer than you think for deep rest to occur. Some extra time this summer may be a game changer for your resiliency in facing the challenges that are likely to come.
Here are more best practices to support deeper rest:
- Consider creating some long or extra-long weekends by adding an extra day.
- Say “no” or “not this summer” to extras that won’t bring rest and renewal.
- Reengage activities and people that are fun and bring life.
- Seek to sleep well (and more), eat well and get moving more physically.
- Stop or cut down on scrolling and social media. Unplug more than feels comfortable to you.
- Reset away from any bad self-care habits or escapist coping strategies you’ve engaged in this year.
- Reach out to a mentor, counselor or trusted friend if you need more support.
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28
Your rest is important, for you, for your key relationships, for your leadership and for the journey ahead. May this summer be a window of deep rest!
Cheering you on as you live and Lead Different this summer!
Dr. Steve A. Brown
President, Arrow Leadership