Rest: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly | #50



Before we dive in I want to let you know that my dog, Gwendoline, was eating an envelope and is very loud toward the end of this episode. I edited out as much as I could! Please forgive her, she is new to podcasting. 

OKAY Let’s talk about rest! What we know about rest and why it’s good: We need it to live! In this episode I offer tips and advice for setting yourself up for a restful bedtime and morning routine to help you de-stress and reduce anxiety as you’re trying to wind down your brain for bed. 

And then we talk about the fact that not everyone has the same access to rest and recovery, and this is what leads to burnout! 

The ugliest part of rest? The fact that it’s SO uncomfortable and often feels like a battle, and we try to rush it and get back to work thinking we rested long enough already. You probably need like 500x more rest than that. 

Please make sure you are subscribed to my newsletter for a Monday morning motivational hug from my creative heart to yours. You can join the list two ways: Take the Creative Block Quiz at or skip the quiz and get my free eBook chock full of brain-friendly goal setting and productivity tips to create a plan that’s customized to your needs when it comes to getting shit done. You can get that eBook at 

Thanks to Leave Nelson B for music and Jen Hearn for photography! 

See y’all next time! 


[00:00:00] Hello, and welcome to run like hell toward happy, the podcast where we are awesome and where we are saying no to the status quo and learning how to achieve work, life, play, rest balance, and all that good stuff. I am your host, Caitlin Fisher. And I have been, uh, tired lately. I have been sick this week.

We’ve had a cold going through our house. It started with a roommate, he got it from work and then it passed to my partner and then it passed to me. And it’s a very congested week in this home. But I’m feeling okay. I just sound [00:01:00] super stuffy. I feel like I sound annoying. It annoys me to be stuffy. But Hey, if you’re here with me, thanks for coming along, grab some water, hydrate yourself. Uh, tell yourself three things that is absolutely phenomenal about you, because you’re great. And you are a bright, shiny star and the shit that you are doing in the world matters like every, every part of it, you know, like if you’re raising kids, that’s awesome.

The fact that you are listening to this podcast and spending time with me online regularly means that you want a better world, that you want a world where we prioritize fun and creativity and resting above, or at least an equal measure to, in [00:02:00] balance with, our productivity and work and making things and doing stuff.

And what we’re talking about today is the opposite of doing stuff. We’re talking about stillness and resting. And the hard parts about resting. And this has been very much on my mind recently. It was the topic of my newsletter this week. I posted about it on Instagram. it just keeps coming back to me.

And so I actually shuffled around some podcast topics. I pushed something to next season. Uh, because I’m already planning season five. I’m so excited about that. It’s incredible! And I just really wanted to talk to you again cause we’ve, we’ve hit it, like I dunno, three or four times this season, but I want to talk to you about rest really specifically.

Um, [00:03:00] the ways that rest can be quite uncomfortable. And so I’m titling this episode rest, the good, the bad and the ugly. And before we dive into that, I want to invite you to please join my email list. I send out a weekly newsletter on Mondays with motivation, with a message, with a love letter, to your creative heart.

That is the goal of my newsletter is that I want to connect my experiences with creativity, with rest, with achieving this balance. I have a magical superpower in which I can find a life lesson in like anything. Like if I walk out and like a bird pooped on me, I would be able to find a way to like, turn that into an inspirational poster.

And that’s what I do every Monday is I sit down and I think like, what’s, what’s going on? How can I [00:04:00] connect this to something that’s going to help people? That’s going to help people connect with their creativity? That’s going to help people know that it’s okay to give themselves permission to slow down, to stop hustling?

And then I send that out and my email list has been growing and I’m so grateful for that. I have like over 130 something subscribers now, and that’s honestly a very small email list and I’m okay with that. ’cause, you know, I’m, I’m just over here, clanging and pots and pans together in my little corner of the internet being like, yeah, you should do what you love. Fuck everything else.

Uh, that’s not always realistic and I’m not for everybody because I’m very loud and I’m very disruptive and I very much want to like burn down society and replace it with good food and [00:05:00] lots of art and just joy. I would love to rebuild society with focus on joy instead of profit.

So join my email list. Get that newsletter. I also will send out, um, if I’m like doing a launch, I will be sending sales emails. So, you know, If you vibe with me, you might vibe with what I’m offering. And of course my offers range from Passion Pacers, which is a very affordable $37 a month.

pro tip, that’s going up to 44 in June. So if you’ve been thinking about Passion Pacers, maybe a good time to think about a little more. And then I have more premium options such as the 90 day goal glow up. And that is a $2,000 program and there’s some stuff in the middle in between there. So I got something for everybody get on the list.

The best part of my list is [00:06:00] that you can actually reply to the emails. So if something really resonates, I literally want you to tell me that I would love for you to reply to a newsletter and be like, I loved when you said this. This made me think about something in a totally new way. Uh, that gives me the warm fuzzy.

So please tell me when you love my newsletter, because it makes me really happy and it also helps me know, like what kind of messages are resonating the most what’s most useful and helpful and supportive to you. So cool. How, how do you get on my email list, Caitlin? What a great question, Caitlin. Thank you. You can get on my list two ways.

One way is to take my creative block quiz. And that will actually give you a series of emails about four different creative blocks and how to bust through them. And I’ll put a link to that in the show notes. If you don’t feel the need to take the [00:07:00] quiz you can sign up, to receive my free e-book. And that link will also be in the show notes. That’s Bitly slash stop burnout e-book and either one of those options will put you on my mailing list. And I will see you in your inbox every Monday.

Okay. So rest the good, the bad, the ugly. The good thing about rest is that we need it to live and it helps our bodies. Like we need sleep, we need to sleep so that our body can function. That is the very basic premise of resting. we can talk about sleep hygiene or we can talk about reducing your screen time so that you don’t have the blue light, which messes up your circadian rhythm and makes you less sleepy. But we’re all on our phones. Like, I don’t know anybody who’s like, oh, it’s seven o’clock I gotta put my phone away and quit [00:08:00] watching television.

That’s just not happening. So my tips for sleeping are one, make a routine, a routine around going to bed and a routine around waking up Having these routines around bedtime and waking up time help you shift modes. Cause our brains are doing 9 million things all day.

We’re having all of the thoughts we are trying to hold on to all of the thoughts. We were trying to remember things for the morning.

So if that is your problem, trying to like remember stuff or say, maybe you wake up and you’re like, oh no, I forgot about our doctor’s appointment or shit I need to add apple juice to the grocery list, perhaps part of your bedtime routine could be making a list of things that you need to do tomorrow.

And something else you can do is keep a notebook by the bed so that if you do wake up in the middle of the night, you can jot it [00:09:00] down and go right back to sleep. That is my gift from me to you.

my bedtime routine looks like I fill my water cup because my waking up routine is that I take my pills as soon as my alarm goes off in the morning. So I need water to do that. If this step in the morning includes, I have to get up to get water and then come back and take my meds. Uh, there’s a very good chance that that’s not going to happen. So I make my little station, it’s got my meds and my water cup, and then I go to the bathroom and then I wash my face and I do my skincare routine and I brush my teeth and I go to bed.

I used to be a nighttime shower-er. I’m now a morning person shower-er because that helps me get out of bed and motivated by the fact that I feel like I need to take a shower [00:10:00] or I’m going to die, not actually going to die, but. Showers are hard. And so it kind of motivates me to get up and out of bed in the morning if I’m like, okay, you gotta shower, like, get it done.

First thing. It’s awesome. And then you get to lay in bed on a towel and go on Twitter. Like cool. If that’s my trade off, that’s my trade off. It’s awesome. So that’s my bedtime routine.

Then my morning routine is typically meds, walk the dog –in a dream world, I would then do my morning pages and my tarot reading.

Sometimes however, I bring the dog back inside and I’m like, let’s sit down on the couch for a minute. And that. That has been my problem area recently. What I need to do is hand her off to my partner and be like, you play with this dog because she wants to play. I’m going to go do my morning thing. [00:11:00] Oh, I also have to eat in there. That’s an important part of it too. Eating is good.

So resting, the good part is that having a restful routine just fucking feels better. All right. Like, I don’t have the scientific data or statistics to tell you, but I can tell you that when you have a routine, it helps your brain go from worky worky thinky thinky mode into, all right, we are resting now.

Maybe if you can’t sleep, you have a podcast you listen to, like a sleepy hypnosis type podcast or some white noise or, I don’t know a meditation or something that helps you calm your nervous system and your body.

For me, when I can’t sleep, my anxiety will just start up and I’m [00:12:00] like, what if a train derails and somehow makes it to our house, barrels through the wall, and I die. Like, how am I going to fight that train? Go to sleep. I don’t need to fight a train. And yet my anxiety is like, what if you needed to fight a train though? So, a meditation podcast would honestly be pretty helpful because that would keep my brain focused on things such as not fighting trains.

So, as I mentioned, another thing you can do is maybe make a to-do list for tomorrow or check your calendar so that you know what your morning is going to look like. Sometimes I will mentally go through the next day in my head. And then other times I will sort of do like a gratitude practice [00:13:00] where I … have we talked about only versus already?

I don’t know if I talked about that on the podcast, but Serena Hicks, wonderful coach who has been on this podcast twice now. She taught me this incredible shift from thinking “I only have such and such” like “I only have three clients,” “I only made a thousand dollars this month,” “I only have a hundred email subscribers.”

You shift that to saying “already.” So “I already have my first three paying clients,” “I already have a hundred people on my email list.” I already have this, I already have that. And it really flips it from like this place of lack and thinking that you’re not going fast enough. It’s hustle. It’s hustle again.

So this place of lack and hustle and shifts it to a place of like gratitude and openness and like readiness [00:14:00] for the next step for the next phase to come and greet you and grow because you you’re already taking the steps to get there.

So if I can’t sleep at night, I do like an “already list” in my head. So I’ll think like, I’m, “I’m so happy I already have three people in this program and I already have 20 people in Passion Pacers, and I’m already reaching so many people. I’m already reaching thousands of people who love my work” and, you know, whatever it is. Whatever’s going on for you? What do you already have? And that will put me to sleep.

That “already practice” acts as sort of like a gratitude mantra, ongoing sort of inner monologue. Pause for dog noises, please stop. [00:15:00] No.

Okay. So there’s, there’s some basics about rest. It’s good for us. It helps us fight illness. It helps us get through the whole day and we can support that restfulness by creating a routine that normalizes the fact that we enter a rest period every day.

So rest. That’s the good. The bad is that not everyone has access to rest.

So this, this happens because capitalism, because people don’t have the support that they need in order to not be working themselves constantly, essentially. So. If your workplace routinely under staffs, then you do not get as much rest [00:16:00] as you deserve from your workplace. If you are a single parent, like holy shit, you are busy, you are raising kids by yourself and you very likely are not resting very much at all

If you are someone who maybe doesn’t drive. And so you need to take public transportation to get places that takes a lot of time and therefore may cut into the amount of time that you have for life and play and rest. Now it is possible that you could turn that commute into like a restful time, like, you know, pop in some earbuds, listen to an audio book, do something that’s restorative and relaxing for you, but you still have to be somewhat engaged with your surroundings because you need to be aware of, you know, when to get off the bus or if your Uber driver’s being weird.

That’s a bad thing about rest is that many of us, many of [00:17:00] us don’t have access to as much rest as we really need.

And the ugly part of rest is honestly that rest kind of feels like shit sometimes. Resting, not in like a sleep way, but in a stillness way in a way where you stop working on purpose, this feels bad. It feels very, very uncomfortable. And the subject line of my email newsletter this week was actually why rest feels like ass

it’s not all spa days and getting pampered and naps and snacks. Like those things are great. You should take a break and go have a snack and relax and enjoy the [00:18:00] sunshine on a beautiful day. Go take a walk, like do restful restorative activities, but the ugly part of resting is the fact that your brain is going to be screaming at you to get back to work.

And it’s, it’s arguably hard work to rest. When we are practicing rest, especially at first, when we’re coming from a place of burnout and overwhelm and overdoing it. When we first start unlearning that hustle mentality. The resting is so hard, it’s so uncomfortable. And then we try to hustle rest. We try to be like, okay, sat down for five minutes, did a guided breathing [00:19:00] exercise.

And I am good to go for another eight weeks. I’ll see you in eight weeks for another five minute breathing exercise. And like, honey, that is not it. That is not enough resting. And the work of resting is knowing that it’s going to be uncomfortable and choosing to do it anyway. Choosing to do it because it’s necessary. Choosing to do it because it is longterm supportive and nourishing to you and your goals.

And my dog is eating an envelope.

And that really is. The not great part about rest, because we want to say, oh yes, resting is so good for me. And I do it all the time and I’m really able [00:20:00] to relax. And that’s, that’s something that we aspire to be right. Is more relaxed is more rested.

But what I want to acknowledge here in this episode and remind you of is that… it might feel like shit, resting might feel terrible. And that doesn’t mean that you’re doing it wrong. And it doesn’t mean that you should stop. In fact, it means you should probably do more, which again sucks.

So my advice to you is to schedule yourself some time to rest and not just sleep. Like I said, not just like a nap, not just a break in your day where you kind of turn your brain off for a few minutes, scroll social media, things like that. Like, I want you to practice stillness.[00:21:00]

So whether you listen to like a guided meditation or do a breathing exercise like that or something. I want you to on purpose, be doing as close to nothing as possible. And then I want you to pay very close attention to what your brain tells you about that.

One for me, that shows up constantly is “I don’t have time for this, I don’t have time to rest. I don’t have time to go on a long walk with the dog. I don’t have time. I don’t have time. I don’t have time. I don’t have time.”

That’s a huge reminder to me that like, oh, okay. I am trying to hustle. Try to hustle this break. I’m trying to hustle this rest period, I’m trying to hustle. So you might have a different phrase that pops up in your head, but that’s the thought for me is I don’t have time for this.

So I’m going to leave you with that because my dog is not chill with the fact that I am still working at [00:22:00] 7:00 PM and yeah, I invite you to be still. And to let yourself have some thoughts about that and just, just notice them. You don’t have to work through them right now. Just notice them and notice which ones keep showing up.

Notice what patterns you have in your mindset.

And we’ll be back with more on rest later. Bring this over to the run like hell toward happy community. I would love to hear about what the thoughts in your brain are that make you resist rest, resisting a rest. Oh, maybe that’s going to be the episode title. That was pretty good. Anyway, I love you. Stay hydrated.

Uh, don’t get sick. And if you do, I hope you get better, very fast. And, uh, you do have time for [00:23:00] rest. Even if you don’t, just give yourself like 30 seconds to shut your eyes and pretend you live in the forest. Okay. 30 seconds work up from there. Okay. I love you. Bye.

Published by Caitlin

Caitlin writes and coaches about trauma recovery, relationships, motivation and confidence, self-love, queer identity, and social justice. They are the author of The Gaslighting of the Millennial Generation. Find their work at

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