The Act of Slowing Down
by Emily Waterfield-Buttner, HHC, Women's Holistic Health Coach + Cycle Educator and Founder of Golden Wellness
Rest has become a rarity, something that has come to serve as a rebellious act against the constant movement of our modern day world. But how did we come to develop this mindset?
We have been groomed to believe that the idea of pausing equates to laziness, boredom, unproductivity, and even missing out. Taking a pause is not something that is glorified in any way shape or form.
You might be thinking, how can we rest though, when there’s so much to do? There’s work and taking care of the home. There’s laundry and meals to be cooked. There’s workouts and skincare routines to be kept up. There’s meetings and gatherings, social events and dinners. I mean, truly, who in this world really can afford to take a minute to rest?
Our world is dominated by masculine energy, and this energy shapes our very go-go-go mentality. We need a bit of masculine energy to stay balanced - but our daily lives cannot be predominantly filled with masculine energy, or imbalance will come to the body, particularly through our menstrual cycles.
Feminine energy on the other hand is the epitome of rest and restoration. It is the essence of the slower parts of the day; the early morning before the buzz of the day, and the act of winding down in the evening, when the moon rises. Feminine energy looks like connecting with other humans that fill you up, and taking time to honor your body, taking great care to tend to your needs. Without a healthy dose of this energy in our daily lives to help reign in our masculine energy, we lack balance. Our menstrual cycles, particularly in our luteal phases, require a greater amount of feminine energy and attention to our vessels. Sometimes this simple act of slowing the pace of life as we prepare for our bleed can offer great relief from symptoms, but also a great connectedness to our cycles and wombs.
You see, the concept of rest could potentially be one of the most profound, yet simple tools to have in your wellness toolkit that can offer complete restoration and deep healing, particularly when it comes to our moon time.
To begin to cultivate a better balance between the masculine and feminine energies, we might aim to begin to rise with the sun, and align our busy parts of the day with the higher energy that day brings, yet pausing to take in quality meals throughout the day, or perhaps stopping for moments to take deep breaths. We can also reap great benefits from learning to slow down and retire as the sun begins to set, slowing our pace, taking time for conversation, book reading, or self care, relishing in the quiet and calm of the night.
But also remember that rest shouldn’t look like something to tick off the to do list. Rest should be a pause from normal daily life. This may look like turning the wifi off, disconnecting from social media, and letting the brain take a break from the massive amounts of information that we take in daily. Let there be one day during your week where you marvel at the way the flowers grow, or how the sun lays shadows across the grass. Make a cup of tea and drink it slowly, while reading a book you’ve always wanted to dive into. Make a day where there is no schedule so you can let your body sleep in as it may, prepare food for your week, and just let things flow, rather than force.
-Emily Waterfield-Buttner, INHC @golden.wellness