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Stop Grinding 24/7! Learn Why Jesus Embraced Rest for Success!

Today, I want to write about pausing along our entrepreneurial journey in order to increase productivity.

In our relentless pursuit of success, we often forget a simple truth: sometimes, the best way to achieve more is by doing less. This counterintuitive idea challenges the hustle culture that dominates the entrepreneurial world.

In Mark 2:27, Jesus declared, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.” This teaches us that rest is not just a command but a gift meant to restore us physically, mentally, and spiritually.

But what about that big proposal that's due Monday?  Aren't I justified taking all of Sunday to work because it means I'm providing for my family?  And what about that huge product launch I have starting next week?  Aren't I justified working until 2 am to make sure it's a huge success so that I can pay my bills?

These are very real examples that mirror a modern problem all of us Godpreneurs face: in our quest to protect and provide for our families through our businesses, could it be that we are missing out on a crucial productivity hack—rest?

Could it be that resting can enhance productivity and lead to better results?

Toyota's Work Philosophy and Practices

Toyota, the Japanese automotive manufacturer, is well-known for its innovative production techniques that emphasize efficiency and quality. One of their key principles is rest and employee well-being.

The Toyota Way, a set of principles that guide the company's operations, includes respect for people and continuous improvement, part of which involves ensuring that employees are not overburdened by work. Toyota has been known to encourage breaks and respect off-time, recognizing that overworked employees are less productive and more prone to errors.

The company’s philosophy is that well-rested employees who are encouraged to take time off for reflection can perform their tasks more efficiently and come up with innovative solutions to problems. This approach has helped Toyota maintain high standards of quality and innovation, leading to its reputation as one of the most durable and reliable car brands in the industry.

This example illustrates how a leading global company successfully incorporates rest into its corporate culture, leading to enhanced productivity and innovation while also fostering a healthier work environment.

What Does the Bible Say about Rest?

Jesus exemplified the perfect balance of work and rest.

The Gospel of Mark recounts:

[30] The apostles gathered around Jesus and reported to him all they had done and taught. [31] Then, because so many people were coming and going that they did not even have a chance to eat, he said to them, “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.” [32] So they went away by themselves in a boat to a solitary place.

In Mark 6:30-32, Jesus encouraged His disciples to come away to a quiet place to rest after they had been busy teaching and healing. He knew the importance of rest firsthand and modeled it throughout His ministry.

As a growth-minded entrepreneur, how often do you allow yourself time to pause and renew? Are you tempted to skip breaks, work late into the night, or ignore the concept of a Sabbath (not working at all on Sunday) because you fear falling behind? If so, you might be undermining your own productivity and well-being.

I've been trying to implement a routine at my office where, like the disciples, I take short breaks every couple of hours during my workday, not to do more work or to fill it with other types of labor, but to truly rest and disconnect.  I have a couch upstairs that I lay on, close my eyes, and decompress for a few minutes. 

Also, instead of working tirelessly seven days a week like I used to, I try to dedicate Sunday to fully rest and worship, trusting God with my business.  Like Chick-fil-A, I'm not open for business activity on Sundays.

This brings us to our actionable step:

Pause to Renew

To embrace the rhythm of "Pause to Renew," we need to reframe our understanding of productivity to include rest as a strategic element. Here’s how we can practically integrate these principles:

  1. Bi-Hourly Breaks: Set alarms to take a 5-10 minute break every two hours to step away from your work. Use this time for prayer, a quick walk, or simply to be still.

  1. Nightly Rest: Commit to a consistent bedtime that allows for at least eight hours of sleep, recognizing that your body and mind need this time to recover from the day’s work and prepare for the challenges ahead.

  1. Weekly Sabbath: Choose a day to completely step away from work tasks, dedicating time to God, family, and restorative activities that recharge your spirit and remind you of why you do what you do.

Key Takeaway

By integrating rhythms of rest into our business lives, we not only follow Jesus’s example but also enhance our capacity to lead and serve along our entrepreneurial journey. This week, challenge yourself to adopt one of these rest practices consistently and observe how it impacts your productivity and perspective. 

Remember, God doesn’t need us to keep the world running—that’s His job. Our job is to align with His rhythms and design for our lives, trusting that He will take care of our business needs.

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