Day 9 #formationFOUNDATIONS | Planning Rests and Rewards

Today is the ninth day of our #formationFOUNDATIONS series. In case you're new here, you can read more about this series or start from the beginning at Our goal for this series is to help you...

  • LEARN about different spiritual practices that you can adopt for your own walk. You will learn how to make the most of your Sacred Ordinary Days planner or the FREE Essentials Workbook you got when you joined our newsletter list, which has all the most essential pages from the planner that we don't want anyone to miss out on.
  • PRACTICE these things on a daily, weekly, and seasonal basis. You will be able to lay (or bolster up) a strong spiritual formation foundation by clearing the space for your new spiritual practices to deepen.
  • SHARE your experience with people who speak the same language. You'll get to know the other members of the tribe, who are some of the wisest, most interesting, super fun, and most real people I know  by following along on Instagram or Facebook or inside Common House, our ecumenical online community.

 DAY 9 | Planning Rests and Rewards

Many of us struggle with the rhythm of work-rest-play. When there is a lot to be done I often find it difficult to stop, breathe, and reset before moving on to the next task or appointment. This is because the world does not work this way. We have to consciously and actively make room for rest, whether in the midst of our day or for a weekly Sabbath. When I tell myself that I don't have time, or that I need to push through in order to accomplish everything, what I'm really saying is that I am not prioritizing my need for rest. I'm pushing my brain and my body harder and harder and not giving it an opportunity to recharge. This intensity can lead to energy depletion and burnout. It also disconnects us from a sense of purpose.

In our daily planner, at the far right of each daily priority box are the words "rest | reward." These are there to remind us and to help us be intentional about taking a break, to plan our days with intentionality, to further train us toward the practice of Sabbath, and to keep our work sustainable. This space is there for you to name what you will do following the work of the priority. A "rest" option grounds and revitalizes you; a "reward" gives you something to anticipate following the priority. 

On a more practical note: your rest/reward doesn't *have* to directly follow your task. It can be something you look forward to at the end of your day. And you can have one big rest or reward at the end of your projects instead of three smaller ones. There's no right, wrong, or perfect way for it all to work. The best way is the one that work for you - that nourishes the things you want to grow, that brings you peace and joy and a sense of purpose.
In the back of the planner, we have a Rest | Reward Idea Bank page for you to use as a place to store up ideas that you can use throughout the year and to pull from when you feel like you need a little change of pace.  Here are some ideas to get you started:
  • Take a nap
  • Savor some chocolate
  • Take a walk
  • Read a book or magazine
  • Sip some tea or coffee
  • Phone a friend
  • Take a labyrinth walk, either at a labyrinth or "finger walk" at the back of planner
  • Spend some time in intentional meditation or prayer
  • Enjoy the silence
  • Listen to music or song
  • Do a crossword puzzle
  • Take a drive
  • Yoga or other exercise
  • Take a bath
  • Refresh a room in the house
  • Watch the sunset
  • Drink a glass of water
  • Do some knitting or crafting
  • Buy some new art supplies


What ideas do you have for rest and reward? Start a list of things for yourself of this things that truly restore you and bring you joy. Start adding to the idea bank in your planner or make a list to keep within eyesight.

Head over to Instagram or Facebook and post a picture of your Rest | Reward Idea Bank using #formationFOUNDATIONS and tag us @sacredordinarydays, please! Or, join the conversation inside Common House, our ecumenical online community. 

Next week we will enter week 3 of our Formation Foundation series and will focus on Weekly Practices. We'll always share the latest blog post in the series at when it's live. So, check there each day for the latest!

If you'd like to use the planner alongside us, you can order one today or get August for $4. You might even already have a planner, either the new Academic year or the previous Liturgical year. If not, today's the day to order yours since they just started on August 1st!