When Did You Last REST Rest?

The last time I had a full day without any scheduled agenda was September 21st 2019.

The last time I had two full days without any scheduled agenda was the weekend of March 16th & 17th 2019.

That aside, I don’t remember the last time I had actually rest for a full day (i.e. no scheduled agenda/appointments/tasks, no following up with work at home, no studying, no household chores/errands, etc.) – it was probably Christmas time 2018.

I won’t speak for previous generations, but I will comment on what I noticed of ours: with the rise of what I believe as the multivalent identity of our generation’s individuals- coupled with the digitization of social and professional culture- it seems like we can NEVER get a break, both literally and mentally.

There seems to be so much unacknowledged expectation and pressure on this generation: that we need to match the integrity and resilience of the robust workforce of the previous generations, and at the same time match the rising inflation and widening distribution, political and social gap of society – it feels as if we’re constantly chasing after something. We need to be constantly keep up (with our predecessors and peers), or we lose out; we need to keep hustling, or lose out; we need to push ourselves to break records within record time, or lose out. 

FOMO? We’ve become a generation of socio-culturally-induced and self-perpetuating work-and-do-aholics.

I do have to say though that it is ultimately still down to our own choices to make space for yourself to rest. I remember a friend literally pointing out that to me, rest was a treat, and that is just sad; rest needs to be a norm- it needs to be a part of my every day and week. That struck me hard.

Why are we so dedicated to driving ourselves to the brink? The cure-rather-than-prevention attitude to our wellbeing and self-care are low-key destroying our health. 

One tip for work-and-do-aholics from another work-and-do-aholic:

If we can’t go against the system, we go with the system: schedule REST DAY into your calendars. It’s kind of oxymoronic, but also coherent.

Once a week, at the very least – or like me, I’ve started to schedule clusters of rest hours as my schedules are filled for the next few months already, so the clusters are the most effective, immediate way to incorporate rest for the time-being.

Do not plan ahead for the rest day/hours- keep it ambiguous, blank, and spontaneous- simply wake up (without an alarm) that day and go about with it; see the beauty of having nothing planned for the day, and just be.

Overachiever Magazine was started by Rehana Paul in October of 2018 to give a platform to all Asian women, non-binary people, and other gender minorities.

Our name is poking fun at the stereotype that all Asians are overachievers, especially Asian women, non-binary people, and other gender minorities. It’s also in recognition of all of us who have had no choice but to be overachievers: managing societal expectations, family obligations, and educational opportunities, all while fighting the patriarchy.

We have grown since then, putting out bimonthly issues (we are contributor powered: apply to write for our next one!), and weekly reviews of culture, and news that is important to us.

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We do not claim to speak for all Asian women, non-binary people, and other gender minorities. We are just here to give them a place to speak for themselves.

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