Health and Sabbath
Revitalise, refresh and reclaim your life
Are you feeling like you’re constantly on the go with no time to catch your breath? Do you find yourself struggling to keep up with deadlines and the demands of your fast-paced work environment? If so, you’re not alone!
Stress and burnout are becoming increasingly common issues in today’s society, and they can take a serious toll on our mental and physical health.
But there’s a secret weapon that can help combat all that stress and burnout—it’s called the Sabbath! By taking a day off to rest, reflect and recharge, you can give your mind and body the break they need. Think of it like hitting the “pause” button on your hectic life and taking a deep breath.
And the best part? It’s not just a spiritual practice – it’s backed by science too! A study published in the Journal of Occupational Health Psychology found that taking a day off from work each week was associated with lower levels of work-related exhaustion and better work-life balance. Stress and burnout can have a wide range of negative effects on your physical and mental health, including headaches, fatigue, muscle tension, anxiety and depression. But observing the Sabbath can help to mitigate these negative effects by providing a regular day of rest and relaxation.
In addition to reducing stress, observing the Sabbath can also improve your sleep. In today’s fast-paced world, many people are struggling to get enough sleep, and the quality of that sleep is often compromised. Poor sleep has been linked to a range of health problems, including obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and depression. But by taking a break from work and other stressors, you can improve the quality of your sleep, which can have a positive impact on both your physical and mental health.
Observing the Sabbath can also lead to increased mindfulness. The Sabbath provides a space for reflection and spiritual practice, which can help you develop a greater sense of awareness and presence. Engaging in spiritual practices such as prayer can help you reduce stress, improve mental clarity and cultivate a greater sense of inner peace. Thus, the benefits can extend beyond the Sabbath and into everyday life, leading to improved overall wellbeing.
What’s more, the Sabbath is an ideal opportunity to spend time in the great outdoors—and that’s super beneficial for your health! Spending time in nature can lower stress levels, improve your mood, and boost your immune response to illness and disease. According to a study published in Environmental Health and Preventive Medicine, spending time in a forest environment increased the activity of natural killer cells, which are a type of white blood cell that plays a critical role in the immune system. So, if you’re looking to give your wellbeing a boost, the Sabbath hours are a perfect time to visit a national park and soak up the rejuvenating power of nature.
All in all, if you’re feeling overworked, overwhelmed and exhausted from the daily grind, the Sabbath is the perfect remedy. Why not give it a try? Your body and mind will thank you for it!
 Sonnentag, S., & Fritz, C. (2007). The recovery experience questionnaire: Development and validation of a measure for assessing recuperation and unwinding from work. Journal of Occupational Health Psychology, 12(3), 204-221.
 Li, Q. (2010). Effect of forest bathing trips on human immune function. Environmental Health and Preventive Medicine, 15(1), 9-17.
Live Webinar: Health benefits of the Sabbath
Dr Christiana Leimena
A group of people who live 10 years longer than others are impacted not only by diet and exercise but also by taking the seventh-day Sabbath rest. Our bodies are cellular machines designed to thrive when one 24-hour period of the week is set aside for rest, for spiritual connection, time with loved ones and being in nature. With the concerning increase of mental health issues, there is a call for what many of the earth population is missing, and that is: time out.