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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Aberdeen chapter.

I write this article having recovered from one of the worst Lupus days I’ve had in a while. With Lupus, our baseline level of living is very much experiencing pain, experiencing fatigue etc. etc. every day of our lives. But flare-ups heighten every symptom we have in every way imaginable, and whilst I have been in the middle of a flare-up for months now, on Sunday, I was only awake for four hours. 

Whilst living with a chronic illness, I also love being proactive, which can be contradictory to say the least as, a lot of the time, my illness does not allow for me to be as proactive as I want to be. So, there are days where I will be bedridden, my pillow being my best friend. I am thankful I prepare for these days and have snacks in my bedside drawer, so I don’t have to get up to get food either. It doesn’t help that I am not very good at resting, as this probably would make my life a little easier, and perhaps cause me have these days less. So, I decided to ask my lovely friends at Her Campus to share their ways of rest, to take inspiration and see how I can apply it to my own life. 

Starting with Niamh, who is an over-active thinker like myself, she struggles to switch off too. Like me, she likes to multitask, where her favourite ways to rest are to read while listening to music, watch a film while doing a puzzle, or colour in. For me, I watch something whilst I crochet or listen to music whilst drawing. 

In apologies to all parents out there, Iona likes to phone her parents as a way of rest. Annoying, I mean, catching up with them for an hour or so whilst cosied up in bed or eating dinner is a way of resting. She also recommends more creative activities such as scrapbooking and crocheting (I second this!) whilst watching a comfort movie or documentary, where she shouts out Blue Planet. 

Hannah has taken a different approach to rest, where she has found a love for attacking her cats, embracing them in lots of cuddles which simultaneously gives her enjoyment but hatred through giving her so much serotonin. She also recommends watching TV, specifically nostalgic TV. 

Charlotte, like me, is horrible at physical rest (such as sleeping and taking naps). She is too nervous for that, so her best mental rest is to be outdoors. She prefers forest walks with her dog or picking up seashells at the beach. Pre-covid, she used to go to the beach and just relax the day before her exams. Honourable mentions also include going to a café for an overpriced cup of tea, punching bread dough, or, like Niamh in being an overthinker who multitasks, she likes to play video games while simultaneously watching a series. 

As someone who is hyperactive, physical rest comes difficult to Maeve. She prefers to rest by doing a low impact activity such as knitting or writing. I would also recommend crocheting (again) and drawing (again) as low maintenance activities that are more relaxing than others. It is not the same as just lying still, but it is still being more restful, which relaxes her more. 

Megan advises taking time away from her phone before sleeping, where she genuinely finds it helpful. She also likes to switch films for reading during the evening, and loves using essential oils on her pulse points. Megan also enjoys a day in nature, which allows her brain to calm down and just being outdoors, especially by the coast, really relaxes her. Other than that, she also loves just sitting, existing with her friends on the sofa, and watching TV. 

All in all, we all have different ways we like to rest. Some people like to be at one with nature, others like to multitask different restful activities, and others are in their element with their creative spirit. However you like to rest, make sure you do it enough you don’t burn out (like I did this weekend), it’s good for you and remember – it’s a whole different type of productivity. 

Business Management and Psychology graduate from the University of Aberdeen '22