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The 7 Type Of Rest & How To Spot You Need Them


It's so easy to mistake lying on a sun lounger or taking a nap in the summer heat as all the rest we need, expecting to be recharged and productive when we return to our normal life. But unless we embrace all 7 types of rest, we are destined to stay fatigued.

Consider this post as your handy guide, a place you can come back to time and time again to feel fully rested.

I have also created a handy checklist to help you capture your own ways of resting. Click below to download!

7 Types of Rest- My Checklist
Download PDF • 1.21MB

Let's dive in...

Physical Rest

Physical rest is the rest required to rejuvenate our body.

Alongside sleep or passive types of rest, we also need to include active rest such as stretching or moving the body in ways that feel good and return it to a neutral state.

Signs that you need physical rest include yawning, sore muscles or unable to concentrate.

Mental Rest

Our mental load AKA our invisible to-do list is ever-growing and so more now than ever we need to prioritise mental rest.

Creating moments in your day to allow your mind to connect to the body, focus on what’s present and feel in flow without the constant interruption of thoughts is a skill we can all get better at.

Ideally, we need to include mental rest every day but signs you are in vital need include frustration, irritability, overwhelm and burnout.

Emotional Rest

We all carry an invisible emotional load. It builds up each time we have to hide our true feelings which is not that uncommon in our day to day activities.

When we allow ourselves to feel and express our true emotions in a safe space we validate ourselves and our very real emotions. Feeling heard and accepted by ourselves is a great way to get emotional rest and build your self-worth.

Signs that you may need emotional rest include frustration, numbness random outbursts of emotion or over-reacting to situations.

Creative Rest

Our minds are amazing at problem-solving and creating new ideas and as humans, we thrive on variety. Creative rest is when we step away from the day-to-day and allow our minds to explore new creative ideas and hobbies.

Any activity that is somewhat challenging and that you love will feel rewarding, make your life more meaningful and refresh your mind so that you are ready to problem solve any challenge that comes your way.

Signs you need to explore something new are when you feel stagnant, frustrated, bored or tasks feel a little mundane or ideas are out of reach.

Social Rest

Social energy gets drained when we interact with people who always want something from us, that could be anyone from your kids to your co-workers.

Social rest comes from both spending time in our own company and with those who fill us up, making us feel ready to tackle the world again.

Signs you may need social rest are feeling irritable and passive-aggressive, resenting others and not wanting to do the things you normally would.

Sensory Rest

Our senses are constantly sending signals to the brain of what is going on around us, effectively keeping us safe.

Yet in this fast-paced digital world there are more signals than ever before, from zoom backgrounds to notification pings to changes in temperature or the smell of 5 people’s microwaved lunches in the office.

Naturally, we all need time away from the usual din of life, giving our senses a break. Time to take in new scenery and listen to the sound of birds not the drone of traffic.

We need sensory rest when it all gets too much we start feeling irritable without really knowing why. Lights feel brighter than normal, sounds louder and we just want to hide away under our duvet.

Spiritual Rest

Having meaning in our life is very important to our wellbeing.

This comes from a connection to something more, a community, a sense of belonging, religious or not, anything that helps to bring us peace qualifies as spiritual rest. The focus is to feel a deep sense of love, acceptance and belonging which will ultimately boost the meaning in your life.

A common sign that you need spiritual rest is a feeling of meaningless, asking yourself “what is the point?”. You may feel lethargic, worthless or uninspired.

Our need for rest is part of life and the ability to pick out the type of rest we need when the symptoms all feel the same is a valuable lifelong journey.

As always if this has raised any questions or you wish to explore your individual needs, I am here.


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