Healthy Rhythms for 2014

woman-leaping.jpgI don’t often have this happen, but at the beginning of 2014, I sensed God giving me two words for the year:  “Healthy Rhythms.” 

Right away I knew what these two words meant (and it has nothing to do with dance or music lessons – though that would be fun).

They are an invitation for me to return to healthier ways of doing life.  The past two years have taken a real toll on me as I have faced some intense stresses in my life and I’ve gotten out of rhythm, out of balance.

But rather than waiting for circumstances to change, I sense God calling me to change – to return to healthy rhythms in my work  habits, my relationship with God, my relationship with others, and in my own self-care (including healthy eating & exercise, and regular “play” time & spiritual practices). So here’s a list of some of the healthy rhythms I sense God leading me to.

See if any of them resonate with you – and please take a moment to share below.   

1.  Give yourself permission to stay in your jammies all day (on a day when you have no meetings or company coming over :).

happy coffee2.  Go for a walk just to enjoy the sunshine (and if it also happens to qualify as “exercise”, that’s just a bonus).

3.  Meet a friend for coffee (and adamantly refuse to feel guilty for “wasting time”).

4.  Break big projects down into manageable, bite-size pieces.  Then set up a  (reasonable) schedule for accomplishing them (and when  you’ve done your “have to’s” for the day, then do something just for fun like painting your toenails purple).

5.  Sleep.  Sleep regularly and soundly.  Remove any clutter from your bedroom and your mind – anything that might interfere with sleep (and whenever possible, let your body wake up when it’s ready, rather than to an alarm clock).

gift6.  Boost your mood – and someone else’s – by singing a show tune & acting it out, telling a joke, or leaving a small gift or encouragement card for someone as a surprise.

7.  Eat something green, something filled with antioxidants, something picked fresh from the garden (and anytime you crave sugar, pop some blueberries or other fruit quickly into your mouth).

8.  Forgive yourself for not being perfect (and while you’re at it, forgive someone else, too).

Hubble 19.  Stare at the stars and remember Who made them (and rather than feeling insignificant, let the stars remind you how much God loves you – He’s big enough to hold galaxies in His hand, yet close enough to know your every thought).

10. Sit quietly for at least 10 minutes until the noise in your head stops (then listen deeply to your own heart and the longings God has placed there).

11. Remind yourself that this life is just a blink, this world is not your home (and before you know it, every tear will be wiped away and you will be fully in the Presence of LOVE).

12. Write.  Use the sacred, God-given gift of words to inspire yourself and others.  Write what you know. Write as the Spirit leads.  Don’t aim for perfect, just let the words flow – and from them God will lead you to deep truth, real feelings, and honest questions.

open hands13. Hold everything loosely.  Rather than living a fear-drive, clinging, grasping life, choose to face life (and God) with open hands (and even when things don’t go your way, find something to be grateful for, something to celebrate).

I’d love to hear some of your own healthy rhythms that you sense God calling you to – I’d also love to hear what kinds of rhythms you struggle with.  Please share in the comments below.


  1. Healthy rhythms to try:

    Playing with my children.

    Reading some books for enjoyment.

    Remembering to stay focused and get something needful done so I can look back on an hour spent at the computer and know I accomplished something, rather than surfing around on blogs and social media without any specific purpose. I think I could also state this one as: Create more than I consume.

    Schedule time to be on social media for the purpose of enriching relationships or making business connections. It doesn’t have to be a waste of time if done intentionally!

    Spend time in my garden. And give myself permission to enjoy it and really invest myself in it.

    I could go on… I tend to get either so caught up in work-work-work that I don’t relax. Or I get overwhelmed by all the work and STILL don’t allow myself to relax but piddle around uselessly because I NEED to relax. I suspect that if I really relaxed, then I could also really focus during the time I should be working.

    • Linda Sommerville

      Teddi, I totally understand. I tend to be an all-or-nothing kind of gal myself. Sometimes this works just fine, but often times I can get out balance. I think one of the reasons I really like the idea of “Healthy Rhythms” is that there can still be times for busyness (with an upbeat, staccato rhythm), and times for slowing down (with a mellow and relaxing rhythm). If it’s all one or the other, life will feel out of whack. But if I can allow myself to speed up and slow down as needed and appropriate, then I will get work done and also take time to smell the roses.

      Thanks for sharing your list, and your struggles. 🙂

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