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Rest and Recharge

Every time an academic year comes to an end, the question of whether to rest or charge ahead always comes to mind. Should we take the break we definitely need, or should we take advantage of the “off-season” to gain some ground on project number eighty-eight? Though there are times and consecutive years we can all admit to choosing the latter, there inevitably does come a time when we must choose the former, lest we burn out, or worse yet, develop a negative health condition due to overstress and overload.


The drive to produce more, be more, strive for more, and top the last musical experience with something “more” runs rampant in the music industry. The competitive nature with others and ourselves begins at the earliest stages of our music training. This competitiveness does indeed create commendable results, but we need to handle it with care and not allow it to come at the cost of our own well-being. This is not to say that creating more and pushing the boundaries of what we can achieve in the arts isn’t worth striving for, but rather, we need not push our limits without first acquiring adequate rest between creative episodes.


When we look at some of the most famous artists in recent history, we discover the toll the entertainment industry has on a person’s well-being. Take Michael Jackson and Whitney Houston as an example. Their stardom came with greater and greater demands each year—vigorous schedules and demanding travel which quickly added up to unhealthy routines. Not only did these artists take on the challenges of maintaining their celebrity status, but they also faced a physical toll and emotional toll which eventually led to their lives being cut so incredibly short. Of course, countless other celebrities may come to mind who also fell victim to this demanding spiral.


To avoid such negative consequences of our work, an important goal we should aim for is that of balancing our lifestyle between work and rest. Yes, easier said than done, and yes, something that people have discussed time and time again. Some may even argue that “a balance” does not actually exist. Nonetheless, we can always decide how we utilize our time. If you are finding yourself caught in a web of exhaustion and fatigue, then ask yourself what you are truly doing about it. If you know you need to prioritize some rest in your routine, then reevaluate the demands you currently have and figure out how to prioritize some respite. Even if it’s just a few minutes a day or some time on the weekend, take the time your body and mind truly need.


When we compare cultural differences between countries, there are certainly some that prioritize rest and personal well-being more than others. But regardless of where you live, you must assess the patterns in which you find yourself. Take any necessary steps needed to ensure you don’t burn yourself out or cause unnecessary health complications that may have been avoided as a result of how much you are pushing yourself. After all, as wonderful as achieving success is, we all want to be able to enjoy it.


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