Invest in Rest: What Happened When I Took My Own Advice

While I was writing my latest book, Bust Out of Service Fatigue, I stumbled across something interesting after developing the chapter called “Invest in Rest.” Want to know what I discovered? I realized wasn’t walking my talk. Rest isn’t just about sleeping enough or putting your feet up with a cup of hot tea. Rest is about taking a break from the things that break you.

What tends to “break me down” in energy, motivation, and enthusiasm is a twin-pack of behaviors: frequent viewing on social media, and a calendar too full of yesses. Maybe you can relate. So, after the book was done and I needed a break of my own, I made a note to try something different in 2024.

On January 1, my husband Tom and I officially became snowbirds (and we picked a good year to do it, because at home in Illinois, the temperature dropped to -10F with a windchill of –40F while we were gone. Yikes.) During that cold snap, I was working, but doing it remotely from Florida. Now, I realize that not everyone has a job that allows them to work virtually, however the emphasis of of what want to share with you is on the two actions I stopped doing this month that can be done anywhere, anytime, by any of you!

First, I limited my social media viewing to hobby-related* posts only. I kept my phone buried most of the time, choosing instead to enjoy all the activities around me instead of looking to see what everyone else was up to. “Scroll envy” is how many of us get bogged down in self-inflicted negative headspace. Why? Give it a rest!

Second, each morning, I had client calls or business tasks to tend to in order to keep my business running. But I worked hard to keep my calendar empty after 12:00p.m. This type of segmented break can often be used in the workplace too.

Years ago, when I was managing a department of people, I implemented a rule that worked well. Every afternoon we had “quiet hour” from 2-3p.m. That meant no one on staff made outgoing calls, appointments or meetings, and no interruptions by fellow staff members. Of course, we took incoming calls as needed, but most of the time our doors were shut, heads were down, cranking out the work.

Believe it or not, THIS IS A FORM OF REST! We were taking a break from a crowded calendar and the fatigue of constant interruptions in our doorways(you know, the “Have you got a minute?” type requests that are never just a minute).

As my month hiding from snow ends, I feel revived, more focused and ready to jump back into my normal workflow when I return to my office. Yes, I feel rested, but not because I got away.Because I took my own advice with specific actions to prioritize time to reset and recharge.

Control the scroll and the calendar—these two simple actions can be the easiest steps to busting out of service fatigue if rest is where you’re coming up short. I’d love to hear what you have done to invest in rest that goes beyond napping!

*I get lots of questions about my hobbies! Currently, I’m focused on : Vintage collectibles, flipping furniture and learning to play mahjong. More on that another time!


Meet Laurie Guest

Meet Laurie Guest

An entrepreneur, keynote speaker and author, Laurie Guest, CSP is a “go-to-resource” for customer service excellence. For more than two decades, she has shared her practical point of view on customer service and staff development with audiences and companies across the country, blending real-life examples and proven action steps for improvement. Her latest book, The 10¢ Decision: How Small Change Pays of Big, presents her most sought-after and impactful strategies to find and retain the best staff and highest-quality customers while delivering exceptional guest experiences.

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