[youtube=http://youtu.be/tONZvhsCZsg]The South has been taken by storm where I live, and there is ice and snow all around. The snow brings a mixed bag of emotions for people. Some get excited because school is out, some are angry that they are stuck indoors, some businesses are losing money, while others are earning because of the snow. One thing I think everyone can agree on is that snow can be a lot like life at times it starts out beautiful and as time passes and it melts, it can be a dirty sight. On a silly note, snow reminds me of a fun memory I have sledding in high school. It was a night time adventure while spending the snowy days at a friend’s house with my sister. We decided to go sledding down one of the best hills in Kannapolis, NC near the water pump station…Needless to say it the fun ended when the police showed up to say we were trespassing…

For today, I’m focusing on being thankful for the snow and the break that it is forcing me to take. I love mornings when I can sit and read and enjoy my coffee without time constraints pushing me out the door. The snow allows me to breathe. It’s kind of ironic that I’m doing a study by Priscilla Shirer on “breathing” as I write. I’ll just share a few things from this study about rest that hopefully will help ease your anxiety in many ways or at the very least ease your anxiety about being stuck at home.

-Harriet Tubman reminded me that You have to recognize that you are a slave before you can be freed. What are you a slave to?  What do you need rest from? What do you need to stop? Stop and reflect on what controls you. Does your schedule control you?

-God created rest, tranquility and peace. He also commanded us to rest. Are you doing this or are you so addicted to chaos that you can’t enjoy a break even when it is forced upon you, such as a snow day? When we neglect tranquility, peace, serenity, and repose, we miss out on some of God’s greatest gifts.

-What areas in your life need some margin? Brad Lomenick states, “Margin is powerful..It creates opportunities. For businesses, margin is one of your top priorities b/c it creates profits. Margin in family creates memories. Margin in our lives overall creates options to pursue dreams, to think, to pray, to relax, to meditate, to grow and ultimately to live life more fully.

-Are busyness and exhaustion idols in your life? Is the only way we know we’ve done enough is when we are running on empty and when the ones we love most are the ones we see the least? states Barbara Brown Taylor

-Just because you can do certain things, have certain talents and abilities, and/or you are more capable to do certain tasks doesn’t mean you are the one who should do them all of the time. -Beth Presley

From a mental health perspective, I believe the craziness of our busy lives, the pressures to have more and do more, and the overstimulation with technology have caused increases in many health problems, including anxiety, depression, and many more mental illnesses. We must find the discipline at some point to turn off, unplug, say no, and at some point stop and rest.

Learn to rest during this time and when the snow melts and has to be cleaned up, clean up some of the craziness in your life that is preventing you from peace and tranquility.

Enjoy the snow!

Natalie

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