Siesta: Give Your Brain a Break

How many times do we keep trudging through our tasks lists and our busy days and forget to slow down? If you’re anything like me, I’m constantly juggling multiple roles. I have many operating modes  in one person: wife mode, mom mode, entrepreneur mode, coach mode, volunteer mode, yoga/health mode, etc. And all of these modes require spiritual, mental, physical, and emotional energy – and a LOT of it.

I am finally learning the invaluable nature of downtime. Taking siesta.

Somehow we neglect down-time not only in our amazing American culture, but also as individuals. That’s why this week I’m bringing back a once loathed summer camp ritual and now celebrated practice: Siesta.

At summer camp, siesta was the dreaded 1-1.5 hour down time when we were asked to stay on our bunks, be quiet, and either nap, write home, or read. It took forever. I loved when I had sneaky counselors who quietly read books, because it made the time go faster. I know I never appreciated it as a child.

So here we are, over 30 years later and I would give anything for a consistent and regular 1 hour siesta. Some days I can carve out a 20-25 minute power nap, close my eyes in silence, or journal, but I admit that I am far from consistent. I would love to make Siesta a ritual.

This week, let’s stop the clock and our to do lists and make time for extreme self-care through some serious downtime. Start making time for daily Siesta just after lunch or in the afternoon: One full hour if you can, and if not, be sure to set aside 20-25 minutes. Here are some great ways to quiet your mind and be still:


1. Take a 20-25 minute power nap. This will quiet those much exhausted brain waves and let your natural and aspirational thoughts flow in your subconsious. Here’s the trick: you have to turn off your to do list and that voice in your head that is all too eager to keep talking to you.

2. Journal. Remember that dream you spoke into being in last week’s session? Write about it or something else that frees your mind. Do it quietly for 20-25 minutes.

3. Write a handwritten letter or postcard to someone. Loved ones in the older generations will deeply appreciate this.

4. Zone and Zen out to some great music. Favorite Pandora Stations: Thievery Corporation, Chill Out Radio, and The xx Radio are some of my favorites.

5. Be still. Close your eyes. Just be quiet.


So happy siesta-ing. Remember to share it with our community and me at #betsysummercamp2015 on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

And, during this July 4th week, know that I am truly grateful to have the freedom to have my own business, serve each of you and my clients, and enjoy the free life that I have been given. Celebrate our freedom big and safely this weekend!

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