The excellent work our teams are doing is a constant source of inspiration and learning for me. One of the best parts of my job is interacting with different members of our team from various places within our organization because I am able to hear and see the different approaches that are used to achieve our mission. Over the years that I’ve been doing this, I’ve learned something important about how excellence is achieved—regardless of the sphere in which people excel.

Sometimes I meet people whose physical energy seems almost boundless. Often these are individuals whose jobs require physical exertion and strength. As I watch them power through their work, I am amazed at the grace and dexterity they bring to their daily responsibilities.

Sometimes I meet people who are required to bring very serious mental focus to complex and difficult tasks. They can drill down on a problem with great precision and persistence.

There are some people in our organization who bring such passion and focus to our shared mission and task that they inspire whole teams to think more clearly about the inner commitment that is necessary to bring the healing ministry of Jesus to life in their work.

And one the most important things that we do is to share in the often difficult journeys of our patients and their families,  and provide effective emotional support.

What is it that enables excellence in each of these mission-critical areas? It’s rest and renewal.  The need to fully rest and recharge is as important as being fully engaged physically, focused mentally, passionate about our mission of healing and wholeness, or emotionally supportive of those we serve.

Rest takes many forms. Taking a walk, being quiet or contemplative on a regular basis,  doing something unrelated to the primary task, attending to daily chores, even looking through a magazine or at silly cat videos for a few minutes can all contribute to better health and greater effectiveness.

I fully endorse making rest a regular part of your daily and weekly routine.  I was raised in an Adventist family in which we observed the Sabbath every single week—an entire 24-hour period devoted to rest. I cannot adequately express how that cycle of rest and renewal has positively impacted my life. I still look forward to Sabbath and have tried to pass that appreciation along to my own children.

The ebb and flow of resting and reengaging is a primary component of achieving excellence in every aspect of our lives.