Try for freeTry for free
MeditationPermission to Rest

Permission to Rest

Sometimes it feels like there’s no time to slow down. But giving yourself permission to rest is a radical act of self-care and self-love, going against the norms of our ultra-productive society. Take time to practice this today — you deserve it.

Try 14 days free

Better mental health starts with Headspace. Unrivaled expertise to make life feel a little easier, using guided meditations, mindfulness tips, focus tools, sleep support, and dedicated programs.

Try 14 days free
Better mental health starts with Headspace

Hello there, it's Rosie, meditation and mindfulness teacher at Headspace. Do you find it difficult to make time for yourself, to really, truly rest and relax? It is not always easy to do so, so please know that you're not alone if you're nodding your head. This exercise is all about giving yourself permission to rest, and this is something that I've had to work on myself over the years. When I first started practicing meditation, I had a difficult time sitting still. Stillness, to me, meant an opportunity for my worries and anxiety to settle and expand. I didn't think resting was going to help anyone, so instead, I felt compelled to keep myself distracted and busy at every moment. We live in a world where we are constantly being pulled in many different directions. We fill moments of stillness with monotonous scrolling, instead of giving ourselves a moment of peace, a moment where we can truly rest. Our attention is one of our biggest resources, and it is limited. When we keep ourselves distracted or busy, there are typically great consequences. We can get burnt out. We can become resentful. We can be in a constant state of overwhelm, and at worst, it can make us sick. For some reason, many find it easier to rest when given permission by another person. But what if you gave that permission to yourself? What if you could allow yourself in those moments, like right now, an opportunity to just be there, where you are, simply at rest? Let's begin by finding a comfortable position. This could be sitting or laying down. It's best for you to be in a position where you can be there for just a few minutes. Adjust yourself as you need. If you like, you can begin to close your eyes. If it's easier to keep your eyes open, have your gaze rest on a point in front of you, soft enough to where your eyelids can rest comfortably. Become aware of your breath and your body breathing. Notice the busyness of the mind or the fluctuation of thought. For the next minute, let the mind do and think whatever it wants. Give the mind full permission to plan, to think, to make lists, and so on. Begin now. Begin to set an intention for your practice. I suggest using the affirmation, "I give myself permission to rest." Feel free to repeat this throughout this meditation. Notice what happens when your body begins to settle in. If this is difficult for you at any point, come back to this practice at a different time. Now, begin to let go of any thinking or doing, and as best you can in this moment, allow your body to relax. Whenever you notice your mind beginning to wander, simply return to your intention. I give myself permission to rest. If your mind has wandered, just notice, and have the intention to breathe and relax. Let your breathing be as...


Duration8 min

About your teachers

  • A former Buddhist monk, Andy has guided people in meditation and mindfulness for 20 years. In his mission to make these practices accessible to all, he co-created the Headspace app in 2010.

    More about Andy
  • Eve is a mindfulness teacher, overseeing Headspace’s meditation curriculum. She is passionate about sharing meditation to help others feel less stressed and experience more compassion in their lives.

    More about Eve
  • As a meditation teacher, Dora encourages others to live, breathe, and be with the fullness of their experiences. She loves meditation’s power to create community and bring clarity to people’s minds.

    More about Dora
  • Kessonga has been an acupuncturists, therapist, and meditation teacher, working to bring mindfulness to the diverse populations of the world.

    More about Kessonga
  • Rosie Acosta has studied yoga and mindfulness for more than 20 years and taught for over a decade. Rosie’s mission is to help others overcome adversity and experience radical love.

    More about Rosie
Your lifelong guide to better mental health

Your lifelong guide to better mental health

Stress, sleep, and all the challenging emotions — care for your mind with the everyday mental health app that's shown to make a difference.

Try 14 days free
Look After Your Mind

Look after your mind

Proven guided meditations and programs to help you stress less, sleep more soundly, and better navigate life’s challenges

Science Backed


Studies show that using Headspace for 30 days can reduce stress, increase resilience, and improve overall well-being

Explore Content

Explore 1000+ 
expert-led exercises

Access our library of meditations, breathing exercises, and guidance videos for stress, sleep, focus, everyday anxiety , parenting, and more.

Member reviews

Hear from some of our members

Your app brings so much peace and tolerance to our home.




Changing my thoughts has allowed me to change my life.




The stress and loneliness courses … taught me how to comfort myself.




Headspace provides me with … a connection to myself, and a disconnection from negative thoughts, feelings, and sensations.




Related to 'Permission To'

Learning How to Rest and Relax

Podcast4 min

Resting and relaxing isn’t always easy.

More to explore

Beginning Meditation


Reframe Stress and Relax


New and Popular


Becoming a Mindful Parent

    • Terms & conditions
    • Privacy policy
    • Consumer Health Data
    • Your privacy choices
      Privacy Choices Icon
    • CA Privacy Notice
  • © 2024 Headspace Inc.
  • Terms & conditions
  • Privacy policy
  • Consumer Health Data
  • Your privacy choices
    Privacy Choices Icon
  • CA Privacy Notice