On the importance of rest for artists

Spoiler alert: the hustle is over-rated!

On this episode of the Art with Soul podcast, I offer you a short – and inspiring – creative pep talk for the days when you’re feeling overwhelmed. This your reminder – and your permission slip – to rest. You’ll find the transcript {lightly edited for readability} below.

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In a world that is all about the hustle, going slow is a radical act of rebellion.

In a world that prioritizes productivity, finding your own pace is a radical act of rebellion.

In a world that focuses on being busy, doing nothing is a radical act of rebellion.

In a world that focuses on multi-tasking, going deep is a radical act of rebellion.

As an artist…as a creative, your vision is a radical act of rebellion.

So often we are told that we need to be consistent. To produce like our life depended on it.

But being human. Being messy and inconsistent and vulnerable…is a radical act of rebellion.

Choosing to devote yourself to your art is a radical act of rebellion.

Choosing to rest is also a radical act of rebellion.

Rest. That is the common thread in all of these acts of rebellion.

Because it is in the rest, in the pause, that our overshot nerves have a chance to relax.

It is in the rest, in the pause, that we can slow down. Breathe in. Go within.

It is here that we can cast our net of imagination far and wide, making the connection between the many different threads we are holding.

It is here that our minds open up, allowing us to connect with a source of creativity that is bigger than us.

Choosing to rest is a radical act of rebellion.

When we make no space for rest, when we are caught up in the hustle, our creative well starts to dry up…writer’s block, artist slumps, all of these are signs of an overworked and exhausted mind.

In a culture that seemingly focuses on creating for an audience, choosing to create for an audience of one…for YOURSELF….is a radical act of rebellion.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, stressed out, burnt out, this is your reminder to rest. The world will not stop if you take a break for a few days…a few weeks…or a few months.

We so often lose sight of the fact that we are in this for life. As an artist, we cannot not create. We may take breaks, but we always return, because we must, because it is who we are, because it is how we live.

If you’ve been afraid to hit the breaks, treat this as your permission slip.

Rest, dear artist. Dream. Imagine. Envision. Soar. Come back when you’re full to bursting with fresh creative ideas.

And always remember, you are allowed….encouraged even….to your own radical acts of rebellion.

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I’m an artist and art educator, podcaster, tarot reader, and writer. I share my discoveries along the path to inspire you to live a more creative, soul-centered life. Receive my love letters for more of my musings on life and creativity. P.S. I love Instagram - join me there?


  1. The rest allows us to go within but then we also need to let the creativity flow out. That is where I think I fail. A million ideas in my head but they just remain there because either I am too lazy to work on them or am too afraid to let them see the light of day

    • What if you’re too lazy to work on them because they don’t excite you enough? And the ones that you’re scared of, what if you started working on them quietly, not telling anyone about them until you feel more confident about how they’re shaping up? And what’s the worst that could happen? An idea may tank, but maybe that will give you a different breakthrough? Just some things to think about maybe 🙂

  2. Well said, Shinjini! We’re all grappling with a lot of stuff, some days almost simultaneously and it’s not easy to find ourselves a but overwhelmed now and then. I have been taking a lot more breaks lately but it’s helped me come back inspired , so yes, all for a break when that’s what we need.
    Hope you’re doing well, Shinjini. Stay safe and take care, dear.

    • Yes – it seems like we’ve been grappling with a never-ending tsunami of stuff recently! And it’s so easy to get overwhelmed in such times. Good to hear that you’re coming back feeling more inspired after your breaks! Stay safe, Esha. Take care!

  3. Oh rest is must, to let the creative juices in an artist stay flowing. Specially with AtoZ in April and lot of news around, we sure need the break. Relax and Rejuvenate, it sure helps to dream fresh and imagine new.

  4. So well said. Resting is essential for growth. Essential for mental well being. With so many things happening around us, we should take a break between busy days. It will help us create more space for thoughts and ideas. Excellent post Shinjini.

  5. this was just what I needed to hear.
    Thank you for this episode.
    when you shay we cannot not create
    I had a loud laugh and a little tear of joy to receive that gentle reminder that rest is okay.

    I will be sharing this with all creatives..

  6. Loved this, Shinjini. Listening to your podcast after a long time and this is just what I need to reaffirm some of my decisions.
    PS: I’m not able to add my review since I’m not an Iphone user. Does that make sense? I don’t think Spotify (where I heard it) has a review facility does it?

  7. You are absolutely right, Shinjini! Rest is the most important ingredient in anyone’s life. An artist often ends up overworking letting go of all the rest time, especially in today’s hustle culture which propagates sleep is for losers. Very good reminder for many of us, Shinj. Loved listening your podcast. 🙂

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