Have you ever been ill or injured and felt like you just could not stop long enough to rest and recover? Time won’t necessarily heal your sore shoulder or your painful knee. Oh, you may notice less pain, but your body does not forget an injury, especially if you have not taken the time to let it heal completely.

There are lots of instances where therapy calls for moving a muscle or joint to keep scar tissue from becoming rigid and restrictive. There are also lots of instances where continuing to stress an injury can cause inflammation to prevent healing and create even more scar tissue that will become problematic. Resting for a few days, or weeks (whatever it takes) can help an injury heal more quickly and completely than it otherwise would. The same goes for letting your body recover from an illness and restore the resources that keep you strong and well.

Stop and sleep. The healing that happens when we sleep is profound.

Stop and get good therapy. Massage is great therapy for healing. So is physical therapy, acupuncture, Reiki, reflexology and lots of others. Find the right set of therapies to address your injury and/or your general well-being.

Stop and reconnect. Take the opportunity to examine how you were injured and why. What can you change to reduce the risk of the injury or illness?

If your presence and your skills are important to the people who depend on you, then the best thing you can do is take care of yourself so you can continue to be there for them. It is important to put yourself first so that you can meet your own personal goals and serve others with joy.