Erika Petrelli
Erika Petrelli

Happy Fourth-of-July Week!  The quintessential marker of “summer” for many of us.  Since it’s on Wednesday this week, I’ve heard so many people talk about how it makes the whole week feel like a vacation, even if you just have the one day off.  

I’m kicking off the holiday by going to see Def Leppard and Journey in concert tomorrow night.   As a pretty stereotypical girl of the 80s, I’m just a little bit excited about that.  Just a bit. 

I hope you are able to get a break this week, too. A time out. Whether it’s for just one day, or for the whole week.

You probably have a million things to do, right? Whether it’s a never-ending in-box, a deadline, phone calls to return, that report that’s late. Whether it’s that room that needs cleaning, the lawn that needs moving, the closet that you started to organize four weeks ago. Whether it’s the grocery list, the doctor appointment that needs to be made, the haircut that’s overdue, the pictures that haven’t been updated in a year. Whether it’s the friend you need to call, the partner you need to pay more attention to, the kids that are thirsty to just play. Whether it’s the vacation you’d like to finally plan, the gym membership you’d wish you actually started to use, the family member that you need to re-connect with. Whether it’s the savings you’d like to start, the bills that need paid, the neighborhood kids selling their cookies and popcorn and fruit, the sports that need signed up for. Whether it’s that flight that needs booked, that speech that needs written, the staff that are waiting for answers to this question or that, the meeting that needs planned. The life list that feels overwhelming when you look in the mirror. Or around you.

There are things.

A never-ending stream of them.

This week, this classic summer time out week….   Can you afford an actual time out from all of them?

Or, I guess the question is:  can you afford to NOT take a time out?

What does rest look like for you? Sitting by the pool? Sipping a glass of wine? Laying on the couch under a cover and binge-watching television? Going to the movies? Taking a hike? Sleeping in? Listening to music? Meditating? Taking a yoga class? Going to church? Grabbing coffee with a friend? Dancing? Journaling? Cooking? Taking in the sunset?

We can beat ourselves (and each other) up about our never-ending to-do lists. But the truth is, in real life those lists are never going to be all checked off. They’re just not. And just when you slay one thing on your list, when you pat yourself on the back and say Damn! I’m finally on top of it all! … well, you’ll turn around and the universe will hand you something totally new to add to your list. I don’t know anyone this isn’t true for, even if the images and captions we see on social media try to say otherwise.

So, just rest for a minute, will you? Give yourself that gift this week.  I’m more than sure you’ve earned it.

How can you rest this week?

Erika Petrelli

By Erika Petrelli

Erika Petrelli is the Senior Vice President of Leadership Development (and self-declared Minister of Mischief) for The Leadership Program, a New York City-based organization. With a Masters degree in Secondary Education, Erika has been in the field of teaching and training for decades, and has been with The Leadership Program since 1999. There she has the opportunity to nurture the individual leadership spirit in both students and adults across the country, through training, coaching, keynotes, and writing. The legacy Erika strives daily to create is to be the runway upon which others take flight. If you enjoy these blogs, you should check out her interactive journal, On Wings & Whimsy: Finding the Extraordinary Within the Ordinary, now available for sale on Amazon. While her work takes her all around the country, Erika calls Indiana home.