With each passing day the sun comes up a little later and goes down a little sooner.  The pace of farm life, while still very busy, is starting to slow down.  Nature is moving toward a period of rest.

Rest is an important part of the natural cycle.  Plants become dormant, animals go into hibernation.

We incorporate periods of rest into our garden rotations here.

And I try to build a time for rest into every day.  A few years ago I started the practice of taking a 20 minute period of rest after lunch.  Sometimes I nap.  Other times I just lie resting.  Either way I find the break refreshing and I’ve become so accustomed to it that I feel tired in the afternoon if I don’t have it.

In some religious traditions a period of rest is a sacred time.  Like the rest of the natural world, we need our rest.

It’s very difficult to incorporate a time of rest into the hectic workdays of most lives. I can’t imagine taking a 20 minute nap in the afternoon when I was practicing law.  If I felt tired then I’d just have another cup of coffee.

But now I’m an advocate of rest.  If you’re not already doing this, try stopping and resting quietly for 20 minutes in the afternoon.  Taking a 20 minute break won’t make much difference in the amount of work you’ll be able to accomplish in a day, but my guess is that the folks who find a way to do it will feel a lot better and probably end up being more productive than those who don’t.