To Be Productive, Humans Need to Hibernate Too

Have you ever hibernated? Do you consider “hibernation” as an essential practice in your life?  While the concept may seem strange or odd since humans don’t hibernate like others in the animal kingdom, the purpose behind hibernation is well worth our reflection and consideration.  In his blog “Make Time for Personal Renewal — 4 Strategies for the New Year” John Hester makes the critical connection between rest and renewal and productivity: “When people don’t take time out, they stop being productive” (Carisa Bianchi). A few years ago after making a major life change, I found myself craving time out; it was during this several month period that I connected the practice of hibernation by some in the animal kingdom to our human need for rejuvenation and restoration. I have come to appreciate the cold, snowy, and sometimes brutal winter days here in the Upstate New York region precisely because it has helped me give myself permission to sit, reflect and regenerate. In fact, between December and the end of March, on weekends — when possible — I set as my intention to park my car inside the garage late Friday afternoon as I return from work and not move it again until Monday morning when I venture back out to start another work week. There’s something freeing, healing, and re-energizing about this practice! If you have a similar practice in your life or if you are interested in incorporating one, I encourage you to read John Hester’s brief blog highlighting four strategies for making time for personal renewal in this New Year.

Blanchard LeaderChat

you, body, mind, soul, and spiritWhen people don’t take time out, they stop being productive.” ~ Carisa Bianchi

I started experiencing back pain around the time I turned 50. When I went to the doctor she told me, “John, you are at that age where every morning you will wake up with pain somewhere.” Wow! Talk about a wake-up call. Luckily, she didn’t leave it at that. She also gave me some specific stretching and strengthening exercises to help with the pain—and when I take the time to do them, they do help.

The reality is that without care and attention, things break down – our bodies, our minds, and our relationships. As we start this new year, I suggest that we each increase our capacity by taking time to regularly renew ourselves in each of the four dimensions of life – physical, mental, emotional and spiritual.

  • Increasing or maintaining your physical capacity

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2 Comments on “To Be Productive, Humans Need to Hibernate Too”

  1. Doug,
    Glad to see this post. This message can’t be emphasized enough. The evidence from neuroscience (and other areas of science) is ABUNDANT. We do ourselves HARM when we do not rest the mind and the body.
    I was reading about noise “pollution” yesterday and its impact on our nervous system. Quiet is essential for us to rest and renew our bodies and brains. That is one reason I am an advocate for some form of mindfulness practice, even briefly every day.

    Thanks for posting this and enjoy the “hibernation.”

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