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Ep. 1 – Why We Need to Work From a Place of Rest

In the first episode of The Selah Entrepreneur, we talk about the importance of rest and how it can benefit us as entrepreneurs.

Here are three key takeaways from the episode:

  • Start small and gradually add more rest time to your routine. Practicing rest can help you fight against busyness and the lies that come with it.
  • Being well-rested can lead to greater productivity and impact without burnout. Make sure you prioritize rest in your daily routine.
  • Many individuals who transitioned from corporate jobs to entrepreneurship are used to valuing the badge of honor associated with being busy. It can be challenging to adjust to viewing entrepreneurship from a state of rest rather than a constant state of being busy.

Listen to the full episode to learn more about how rest can benefit you in your entrepreneurial journey.

And don’t forget to leave a review of the show in the Apple Podcast app to help spread the word to other women looking to build sustainable businesses.

Links & Resources:

  • FREEBIE: Feeling stressed and anxious on your journey to find clarity? A practice of daily gratitude can make a huge difference. In fact, if you let it, it can change everything. Jumpstart your gratitude habit with my 7-Days of Gratitude Starter kit here:
  • Are you ready to find clarity for your business and website? I’d love to help: Get clarity on your business and website plans with the Business Clarity Coaching Sessions:
  • Design a simple and sustainable business that you love, and can steward well with the Selah Society Mastermind here:

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Episode Transcript

Marta Goertzen [00:00:00]:

You. Hello there and welcome to the Selah Entrepreneur podcast, where we take a look at doing online business a little differently for women over 50. I’m your host, Marta Goertzen entrepreneur and business owner since 2008. And for far too long, I struggled with trying to figure out what I wanted to be. When my business and I grew up, I was tired of buying all the courses and downloading all the freebies, all in the hope that the answer I was longing for would suddenly appear. Turns out, clarity doesn’t come in an instant. It’s a journey of discovery and finding answers layer by layer. As I took action, I learned what type of work I really loved to do, who I had fun serving, and the problems I love to help them solve.

Marta Goertzen [00:00:43]:

That clarity gave me the confidence to start designing a simple, sustainable business that I could steward well, and I’d love to help you do the same. If you’re ready to find the clarity you’re longing for, then you’re in the right place. Let’s take this journey of discovery together. Welcome to the very first episode of the Selah Entrepreneur podcast. In this very first episode, we’re going to take a look at the word Selah. Why does it apply to entrepreneurship? Why do we need to become rested entrepreneurs? Why do we need to learn to work from a place of rest? We’re going to take a look at the word Selah itself, its origin, where does it come from? And how does it apply to our businesses today? The word Selah showed up in my business, I think probably back in 2014. Back then, I started a blog because I felt the call to write about resting, about entrepreneurship and how tired we all were, and I wasn’t sure what to call it. And the word Selah, it just kept coming up and coming back to mind.

Marta Goertzen [00:01:45]:

And when I researched the word, the word reflect and reflection kept coming up. So I actually started a blog called Selah Reflections back in 2014. And I blogged and off and on that site until early 22, when I combined my two businesses into one and rebranded into Selah Studios. Then about 2016 ish right around there, I started a publishing company because I was really enjoying joining, writing. I wanted to take my blogging to in a different arena. I wanted to use my photography more. And I started a publishing company called Selah Press, and that’s where I published all of my journals, my picture books, with my photography. I even started an Etsy shop using the name.

Marta Goertzen [00:02:29]:

So it’s been around for quite a while. So if we look at the word Selah itself, it actually comes from Hebrew scripture, and it shows up mostly in the Psalms, but it shows up in the Bible over 70 times, about 39 times in the Book of Psalms and three times in the Book of Habakkuk. And it depends on the translation. I normally see it like in King James or the NIV. But there are some translations that take that word Selah and replace it with the word interlude, which I think is very interesting. But if you look up the exact meaning and find out one’s main core meaning of the word, there’s a little bit of a controversy. There’s people depending on who you read, there’s various definitions. According to some experts, the word Selah is thought to be a musical note.

Marta Goertzen [00:03:19]:

A lot of the psalms are songs that were written to be performed by musicians. And so it is thought that the word sela could be a musical note to show a pause in a song. But others that I read also thought it could mean to hang or to value the full weight of the matter. To pause and calmly think. To pause, take note this is important. Or to give room for quiet reflection. And it was an invitation to reflect. And that’s what I’ve chosen.

Marta Goertzen [00:03:51]:

I said I kind of adopted the meeting. I picked a few of these and pulled them all together. And I use it as an invitation to pause and reflect, to pause and calmly think and to take note that this moment in time, this right here, is important. Now, there’s also another little controversy. I’ve always said Selah, but I’ve also heard it pronounced “say-lah”. So it depends who you talk to. I answer to both, but I use the pronunciation of Selah and as an entrepreneur, I think this word has some very special significance and meaning. And that’s what I want to take a little bit closer look at today.

Marta Goertzen [00:04:31]:

We are so busy. And for most of us, for many of us, we came to our businesses out of the corporate world where busy was a badge of honor. I don’t know about you, but my last corporate job before I started my business, the first iteration of my business, I was easily working 60 hours a week, rarely having a lunch, coming in on the weekends, trying to get caught up. And for somebody who really wanted to adopt a dog, this made things very hard because there’s no way I was going to leave a dog at home for that long, which was one of the reasons I started my business. But that’s a story for another day. So for many of us, when we came out of the corporate world, it was an adjustment to learn to start our business and pursue that business from a state of rest or to view it differently. Being busy was normal to us and so a lot of us had trouble. I know I had trouble shifting to a different speed.

Marta Goertzen [00:05:31]:

I was used to going 600 miles an hour and all of a sudden I could work from home, set my own schedule. And it really was a difficult adjustment when I first got started. And the problem is that busyness and that busyness that we experience in the corporate world. Busyness lies. To us, busyness in the corporate world meant keeping busy. One, to keep up and get all the work done. But also we didn’t want to look lazy in front of our supervisors or the president or the people around us. We didn’t want people to think that we weren’t doing our job correctly.

Marta Goertzen [00:06:04]:

And so a lot of times that busyness was busyness, it wasn’t productive or efficiency. It was looking busy. And for us to come home and start working from home and starting to serve clients and while we’re building up our business, a lot of times that busyness and that looking busy habit continued. I know for me, the lie of busyness came in two different forms. I felt busy or I felt effective. And I felt productive because I was organizing papers. I’m a binder girl, so I was organizing my binders, cleaning up my office. Sometimes it was redoing my website nowadays, sometimes it’s playing in Canva.

Marta Goertzen [00:06:47]:

Didn’t have Canva back in those days. But being busy so many times makes me think I’m being productive and I’m making a difference. And I’m doing things that move the needle forward in my business when really I’m just being quote unquote, busy. And it’s taken me a long time to realize and remember. For one, feelings can lie. They can deceive and not represent the true picture of what’s going on. So I felt productive and I felt efficient, but I wasn’t. I was just doing busy work.

Marta Goertzen [00:07:21]:

Busyness also lies to me and tells me that I need to be in constant motion. That’s just how it is. And that’s normal. That’s what I did in my corporate job. That’s what the people I talk to, other entrepreneurs, that’s what they’re doing. And if I’m not scheduled constantly and if I don’t have a full to do list to start my day out with, I’m not being productive, I’m not doing my job correctly. It also lied and told me that if I wanted to get ahead in my business, that I had to be busy. Now, I want to put a caveat in here, the fact that there are seasons of hustle in our businesses.

Marta Goertzen [00:08:00]:

I am currently in a season of hustle. There’s things that I want to do. I’m starting this podcast. I have other offers and services that I would like to put out there I rebranded a year ago, and I’m still transitioning into this new brand. So there are seasons of hustle. And that’s different from what I call toxic hustle. And toxic hustle is when hustle becomes the norm. And it’s just what happens.

Marta Goertzen [00:08:25]:

And rest is not even a part of the picture. So please know that hustle in itself is not bad. And that’s not what I’m saying here. When rest is not a part of the picture and it began toxic hustle and being constantly busy, that’s the norm. That’s where we run into issues and that’s where the lies of busyness really start to appear. Busyness also can be addicting. How many of you have tried to be still or tried to slow down? And you keep finding things to fill up your schedule, you fill up your to do list. I’m raising my hand on this one.

Marta Goertzen [00:08:59]:

How many of you have had a to do list that looked really short at the beginning of the day but by the end of the day it was longer because all of a sudden you realize you did this, this and this. And because you want to feel busy and productive give you added onto that list so you can check it off. And when you look at the word addiction, it means to cause to become physiologically or psychologically dependent on an addictive substance. And I would say that in this case, the addictive substance is the hormones and the cortisol that we get, the buzz that we get from being busy and feeling productive, the stress and adrenaline produced from being constantly busy is addicting. Plus the praise and recognition we often receive for our busy schedules and getting all the work done and being asked how do you get that all done? That can be very addicting. Busyness also lies and pulls us into the comparison trap. If we slow down too long, that means we’re missing out. We’re not doing our job like we’re supposed to.

Marta Goertzen [00:09:59]:

We’re not going to be like that person we saw on social media or the person who landed in our email inbox telling us all these things they got done or sharing their numbers of their income for the previous month or quarter and we’re not contributing like we feel we should. Again, feeling in there. Feelings deceive and lie and they do not always tell the truth. It feels like we need to be super active again in order to get that buzz back and that feeling of being productive. And how many of us want to be somebody to look at us and say you’re lazy, you didn’t work long, you didn’t get all that stuff done. And I think we have a very warped view of what busyness actually means, what lazy appears to be and not. We don’t have a healthy understanding of rest. I do think in some cases we are getting better but it’s still very hard to not get pulled into that comparison trap and feel lazy because we got our priorities done and stopped for the day.

Marta Goertzen [00:10:58]:

So what do we do and how do we fight back against busyness with the idea of sela and becoming a rested entrepreneur? One of the first things I would like you to do is pull out a pen and paper your journal for me. I have my favorite fountain pens. I have my favorite journal because I am a pen and journal girl and I want you to ask yourself and spend some time reflecting on what are the top three to five, three to five, three to four priorities in your life right now. And I don’t want you just to start writing real quick, quickly. I want you to take a moment again. I want you to take that Sealam moment and pause and think about this and reflect on your answer. I’m looking back at some of my lists from previous years and my list hasn’t changed that much for me. Family and friends, I want to spend time with them and to be there when they need help.

Marta Goertzen [00:11:52]:

Right now, that takes more in the form for me right now. It takes more in the form of family right now because my mother has Alzheimer’s and her health is okay, but her Alzheimer’s has significantly progressed over the last year. That has taken up more of my time. And unfortunately, the rest of my family and some of my friends, I don’t get to see them as much, but they are on my mind. So what are some other ways that I can add them into my schedule and connect with them? Being outdoors is a huge priority for me, spending as much time outdoors as I can. That’s why I take my dogs for a daily walk. I take them outside during the day as many times as I can. In the summertime when it’s drier and we’re not in monsoon season.

Marta Goertzen [00:12:37]:

I like to be out in my garden, especially right now, because my lawn looks like a jungle because it grows so fast. So I need to be out there mowing. But my vegetable garden right now, my flower garden is next. Being outside is my stress relief. It is my grounding. It is a way for me to destress. That’s also where my photography comes from. I spend as much time as possible with camera in hand.

Marta Goertzen [00:13:01]:

Either what I call my big camera, my digital SLR, or most often it’s my phone because it’s in my pocket and I can pull it out real quick. So being outdoors is a huge priority for me. My faith is very important to me. I want to make sure that I’m having time in prayer. I’m having my daily devotions. I’m encouraging others in their faith and then also creativity. I need ways to create with my hands, whether that’s going out to my shop and building something with wood, whether it’s I’m trying to learn to love baking. I’m not there yet, but I’m getting closer.

Marta Goertzen [00:13:34]:

Sometimes it’s crafting, sometimes it’s taking my photography and making cards out of them. That’s a great way for me to combine creativity, outdoors and family and friends is creating cards that I can send out. But then here’s the rub. Here’s the second part of that question. If these are the priorities of my life, how are they showing up in my life? And that’s when I’m going to ask you and me to go look at the calendar. Your calendar is going to reflect your real priorities. And there are times when I look at my calendar and I go, okay, I am so out of balance it’s not even funny. I get my daily walk in when I get my daily devotions in most of the time.

Marta Goertzen [00:14:15]:

And I have dedicated time set aside for my mom every day, and a couple of times a week I bring her home with me. But my creativity has been ignored for a couple of months or I haven’t seen anybody or been able to connect with other family and friends. And there’s an out of balance. And my calendar tells me that my calendar shows what my priorities are right now, even though I say it’s family and friends, outdoors, faith and creativity, my calendar is telling me that’s really not what’s going on. And so there is an opportunity there to look at those priorities and how to find those sela moments. How do I find those little moments and pockets of time where I can pause, where I can connect with family and friends, where I can just go sit on the porch on a sunny morning? We’re finally to the season where the sun hits my front porch at the right time. So making sure I go out there, a lot of times that’s where I want to have my devotions or my prayer time is to go sit on my front porch. Sometimes it’s going out on the weekends and taking a longer walk.

Marta Goertzen [00:15:20]:

Sometimes it’s bringing my mom over for an extra day during the week. Sometimes it’s inviting my niece over and we’re going to have a creativity afternoon. Speaking of which, my niece, we need to do that pretty soon. We haven’t done that in a while. And finding ways to incorporate sela, what I call sela moments throughout the day. And sometimes that’s just taking a pause in an invitation to rest and just take a deep breath. Sometimes it’s a dog’s telling me they need to get outside and so I can go out, wander through the garden, check to see how it’s doing, pull a couple weeds, and just take a few moments to breathe. And that’s often all we need to get recharged and to come back in, get back to work, and to serve our clients.

Marta Goertzen [00:16:02]:

And you’ll notice that when you take a moment like that, why call it a be still moment or a seal a moment is that you come back way more effective, you do come back more productive, and you do come back with fresh ideas on how to serve and how to be there for your clients. Or I can’t tell you how many times I have been struggling with a client’s website and I can’t get it to do what I want to do. And by going outside for a few minutes and detaching from the problem and letting my brain wander to all other things, that all of a sudden I figure it out. My subconscious days at work and I figure out that problem. So after that, I want you to take a look at that list that you made of. What are your top priorities? And make a list of the ones or highlight the ones that are not currently showing up on your calendar. And pick one thing to add to your calendar. If possible today, but definitely by the end of the week.

Marta Goertzen [00:16:57]:

And then I want you to repeat that the next week. And if possible, add two things from your list and they don’t have to be grand and they don’t have to be huge. 510 minutes to begin with and start to develop the Selena muscle, the rested muscle, so that you feel motivated to continue to do this and add more and more rest to your schedule. Because I can guarantee you, because I’ve seen it in my life, I’ve seen it in the women that I coach with, that the more you practice rest, the more you see the benefits of rest, the more you want it and the more you want to practice a habit of rest, the habit of sela. And that is a huge step you can take and fight against the busyness and the lies that busyness tells you. I want you to start develop a habit of rest and I want you to discover the benefits of being a rested entrepreneur. And that’s something that we will revisit here often. And when you are rested, you are more productive and you have an opportunity to make a greater impact without constantly feeling like you’re burned out.

Marta Goertzen [00:17:59]:

So quick recap here is that sila is your permission slip and the one that we often need. So I’m giving it to you. It’s the permission slip we often need, the reminder we need to rest, to reflect, to calmly think, and stop wearing busy as a badge of honor. Sila is a word that encourages us to work from a place of rest. Sela is your invitation to be still and a reminder that rest is not only it’s okay, it is needed and vital as our roles of leaders in our businesses. So if you would like further help developing a restful habit, I have what is called a restivities list. And this word was given to me as a gift by one of my coaching clients and I fell in love with it and worked hard until I could find a way to use it. restivities is restful activities.

Marta Goertzen [00:18:52]:

Resting, and this is a topic we’ll visit later. Resting doesn’t mean taking a nap. It doesn’t mean sitting on the couch and Netflixing all evening. Or it doesn’t mean eating a box of bon bonds. Or if you’re like me, you remember the commercials that said, Calgon, take me away. That’s not always what rest means. Rest can be an activity that you find rejuvenating and recharging. For me, that’s walking, sometimes, that’s being out in the garden, sometimes that’s just cleaning up the clutter that’s accumulated.

Marta Goertzen [00:19:23]:

I love going to bed with a clean sink emptied and clean sink. That to me is a restful activity because I feel rested when I’m done, I feel good about it and I wake up and not feel instantly stressed. So if you would like to learn how to incorporate restivities or restful activities into your day, you can grab my restivities idealists at sealistudios co rested. Thanks for joining me. I hope you found some clarity or an AHA moment that inspires you to take some action today. Before you go, could I ask a favor? I would really appreciate it if you could take a few seconds and leave a review of this show in the Apple podcast app. Your review really does make an impact and help spread the word about this show and gets it in the hands of other women who are looking to build simple and sustainable businesses of their own. Until next time.

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