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How Rest is Helping Me Lose Weight in a Healthy Way

**I’m sharing a bit about my struggle with weight the past few years and how I’m now losing some weight in a healthy way. If this is a triggering subject for you, feel free to pass over it and return if and when the time is right.**


I have finally been able to lose weight for the first time in over two years and the reason may surprise you. Or perhaps if you’ve been reading my reflections for any length of time, the reason won’t surprise you at all.

The catalyst for my (small but steady) drop in weight has been rest. And I don’t mean a vacation, sleeping in, naps, or anything that we typically constitute as restful. In fact, the last 2.5 months have included travel with kids (fun but not restful!), hosting family, a couple rounds of colds, and a children’s musical that has required plenty of parent participation. I wouldn’t necessarily consider this winter to have been a restful one, though there have certainly been some truly memorable experiences.

In spite of the circumstances being somewhat more intense than normal, I’ve experienced more, rather than less, rest. How? Let me count the ways!

“Thou hast made us for thyself, O Lord, and our heart is restless until it finds its rest in thee.” – Augustine of Hippo


1.  I’ve resigned myself to not let guilt, obligation, or fear stop me from resting when I can tell my brain and body need it. Instead of second-guessing or dwelling on the thoughts that prevent me from resting, I have put rest at the top of my to-do list knowing that the rest would enable me to be more productive and meet my responsibilities with more energy and a better attitude. I’ve discovered that tackling anything from a place of rest has nothing but benefits.

2. I have differentiated between two types of rest: the rest required to start a thing and the rest needed to recover from a thing. I feel like I’ve often rested after exertion, but not as often have I rested as the first step. Now I take time to rest before and after my efforts and find that I’m experiencing a well-rounded rhythm as a result. I’m also ‘vegging out’ less and resting with more intention. Less Netflix or show binging and more reading, walks, painting, journaling and time spent with God in prayer and in His Word.

3. I have become more attuned to my intuition in order to better discern when I require rest, or even when my family requires rest, and what exactly that rest should look like. Does it mean crawling into bed to read during the kids’ afternoon quiet time in order to ward off a cold, or does it look like a brisk morning walk around the park in the rain while Will does breakfast with the kids? Do I need to sit in the sunshine and listen to a business book or do I need to wake up early and sit with my journal by the fire? Do we need to stay home from an event and get some much-needed time to connect as a family or should Will and I make plans for a date and get some time without the kids? It’s so much easier to make these decisions with intention when rested and in tune with my intuition. I’ve been making decisions with more confidence and less guilt, more inspiration and less obligation. This alone provides much mental rest!

“Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer’s day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time.”  – John Lubbock

While experiencing more spiritual, physical, and mental rest, something else has transpired. My stress levels have gone down. And I know that if my stress has lessened, my cortisol levels aren’t as high. High cortisol prevents weight loss, so no matter how much I work out and how clean I eat, if my stress levels are up, my weight won’t come down. Elevated cortisol levels also lead to illness and disease. Our bodies cannot maintain high levels of intensity over a long period of time and stay healthy.

Once my I reduced my stress levels, I realized that I was making healthier food choices because I wasn’t eating to fill an emotional void. I started exercising more in order to lower stress rather than to lose weight, and I wound up losing weight anyway. Finding ways to keep my stress to a minimum has had an impact on more than just my weight. I feel so much healthier as a whole and can see how my desire to seek rest has been impacting my family. The pursuit of rest in all its healthiest, truest forms has become more ingrained into the rhythms of my days and weeks over the past few months, and I am so excited to be on the slow train!

If you’d like to read some of my more recent reflections on rest, here are some of my most recent newsletters:

To read more from past issues, click HERE to subscribe to my weekly newsletter and I’ll make sure you have access to more of my recent editions!

If you are longing for an extended time of rest that would enable you to tap into your intuition more fully, why not join me on my Women’s Walking Retreat in the Cotswolds. During our week of walks through the English countryside, you’ll have the time and space to let decision fatigue fade, the natural world speak to your senses, your spiritual life deepen, your imagination flourish, and your intuition reawaken. If you’re feeling conflicted, burdened, overwhelmed, or in need of a re-set, my Women’s Walking Retreat has been designed with you in mind.

As we walk, we’ll stop in ancient churches along the way where you’ll have time to pray or journal, and where we’ll sing hymns and connect. I’ll be teaching on creativity and rest throughout the retreat so that you can take the restoration and inspiration you experience and integrate it into your rhythms back home. My co-leader is a trained therapist and will be providing support if you’d like to process with her. This retreat is designed to offer a time of restoration and inspiration that will serve you for years to come. Please email me at hello@bringinginspirationhome.com if you are interested! You can also click HERE for details.

I hope to see you there!  — Jaime