The 7 Types Of Rest You Need To Actually Feel Fully Refreshed (& How To Achieve Each One)

Tap into a life that lets you rest.

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We live in a world of nonstop access and communication, which both connects us and isolates us from ourselves and other people.

We reach for our phones when we wake up in the morning to read the news and scroll through social media. By the time we go to bed at night, we’ve spent countless hours bombarded with information overload.

It’s no wonder we’re so tired, yet there are simple ways to rebalance ourselves and get real rest.


Here are 7 types of rest you need to actually feel refreshed:

1. Physical rest

When we allow ourselves to rest physically, we give ourselves the gift of recharging and resetting our bodies.

woman sleeping Ekaterina Bolovtsova / Pexels

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Poor sleep can lead to an array of health issues, such as having a higher risk of heart disease, diabetes, depression, and anxiety.

We know how important high-quality sleep is, yet getting a full 7 to 9 hours can often seem impossible.

According to data from Harvard Medical School, there are specific techniques to help you get good sleep.

Going to bed and waking up around the same time every day regulates your circadian rhythms. Limiting your caffeine intake and being physically active also helps you maintain a consistent sleep routine.

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Moving your body gently during the day is a soothing and restorative way to give yourself a boost, especially in the lull of the afternoon, when energy levels tend to dip.


Stretching, doing breathing exercises, and even dancing around the living room to your favorite song are all great ways to refresh.

2. Mental rest

Part of living in a fast-paced world means that our minds are always churning away. We worry about work, our families, and our futures. We worry about the things we can control and all the things we can’t.

Existing in a state of anxiety is exhausting, which is why it’s so important to let ourselves disconnect.

Building mental breaks into our daily routine is incredibly valuable. Stepping away from our desks to go outside and soak in the sunshine and fresh air is a super accessible way to give our minds the tender, loving care they need.


Taking a walk, even if it’s only for a few minutes, is another mentally restorative practice.

Look around as you walk, taking account of what your senses pick up on. Can you hear birds singing? Do you see trees swaying in the wind? How does your body feel as you move? Allow yourself to be present in the moment so you can fill yourself up with the world’s beauty.

Another way to calm your racing mind is to do a brain dump: Putting your thoughts onto paper and letting them go.


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Jasmine Bassett, a wellness content creator, outlined her technique for brain dumping.

“It’s so valuable, especially if you have so many thoughts in your head and you really don’t know how to connect them, or they feel jumbled; this really helps me get everything out on paper and then start to be able to organize from there,” she said.


The first step to a brain dump is writing whatever is in your head down on paper, in no particular order, acknowledging that there are no wrong answers.

Bassett recommends circling the words you’ve written down, in order to visualize and organize the worries that are taking up space for you, which makes it easier to release them.

3. Social rest

A crucial part of recharging your battery is making sure you get social rest.

We’re inherently social beings, but sometimes, we need to take a break from the noise of other people in order to get in touch with ourselves.

Spending time alone and focusing on what makes us feel good is a healthy way to get in touch with ourselves. Everyone decompresses in different ways, so pay attention to what works for you.


woman on her phone Mikhail Nilov / Pexels

Still, it’s important to balance our solo time with being social. Setting up friend dates boosts our mood and helps us reconnect to the people we value.

To get the most benefit from seeing friends, try ditching your phone when you’re with someone IRL. Leave your phone in your bag instead of keeping it on your person so that you can get the full effect of being with someone you love.


Taking social media breaks is another way to rest, refuel, and get back to ourselves.

Neuroscientist Andrew Huberman offered insight into a very common behavior: Scrolling social media without even knowing why we’re scrolling.


Dopamine system ~ Andrew Huberman

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According to Huberman, mindless scrolling is a clear sign that “Your dopamine system has been tapped out and you need to take a break from it.”

He noted that social media can be a force of connection, as there’s “A lot of great social interaction, there’s a lot of opportunity to learn and see things… But when you’re at the point where you’re engaging in something and you don’t even know what the win is, but you find yourself reflexively engaging in it, your dopamine system is now plummeting.”

By putting our phones down, we can reset our nervous systems, which allows us to feel truly refreshed.

4. Emotional rest

We can set ourselves up for success by allowing ourselves to rest emotionally. 


Emotional rest requires us to listen to our intuition and put into play whatever we need to feel fulfilled, even when those boundaries are difficult to set.

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Protecting our inner peace is a practice, something we grow more skilled in doing the more we actually do it.

Learn what’s important to you and honor those elements of your life. Connect with people you love and trust. Lean into the fullest form of self-compassion, accepting yourself as a complete, valid, and valuable person.


Try implementing true methods of self-care: Go beyond bubble baths and face masks and ask yourself what you really need to feel fulfilled.

woman writing in journal Karolina Grabowska / Pexels

5. Creative rest

When we grow up, we leave behind the parts of ourselves that have fun just for the sake of fun.

Yet tapping into our innate creativity is healing. There are powerful benefits to letting ourselves play, the most important one being that it makes us happy.

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Read a book for pleasure, one that has nothing to do with your job. Explore nature. Daydream. Make something that brings you joy because you’re totally worth it.

6. Sensory rest

Part of always being on means that our senses are often overloaded, which can create a hum of unrelenting anxiety.


Taking time to rest our nervous systems is important for our physical and mental well-being.

We can care for our senses by disconnecting from technology in whatever ways we can: Turning notifications off at the end of the workday, leaving our devices in a different room, taking naps, and letting our minds wander are all valuable ways to reset our senses.

7. Spiritual rest

Taking care of our spiritual sides gives us the opportunity to recenter ourselves and remember what we hold valuable.

You don’t have to be completely woo to find small things to hold sacred in your daily life.

Meditate, even if you don’t think you can meditate. Write a list of what you’re grateful for, especially the parts of your life you usually overlook.


Practice rituals that connect you to yourself. For some people, this can take the form of prayer. For others, it’s being in nature, looking at art, or cooking a nourishing meal.

Being busy, overwhelmed, and overscheduled has become the normal way of life.

Yet, by rejecting societal pressure to stay stuck in a stressed-out mindset, we can find real rest and be fully free. 

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Alexandra Blogier is a writer on YourTango's news and entertainment team. She covers social issues, pop culture, and all things to do with the entertainment industry.