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Rest and Digest

Observe: Rest and Digest

Transitions are so juicy.

For a few hundred of my new closest friends and I, the transition of the day is exiting a conference and flying towards home, vacation, or more work. Much has been learned and said. People have convened and now we disperse.

Most of the time we rush through transitions. It is just so easy to end a loop and just launch yourself into another. Still, there is such a wonderful opportunity to suspend instead.

The parasympathetic system, also known as the “rest and digest” system is an immensely important operational part of this human body. Within it the Vagus nerve governs everything from voice use, to regulation of your heart and lungs, and actual digestion. In health, we are always in a cycle of “rest and digest” a fact that we can support and exploit in order to process experience and maintain vocal health.

So this is what I am doing today:

  • Vocal rest. For me this means only speaking when it is absolutely necessary.
  • Gentle, active stretches especially through the hip.
  • Supporting the Vagus nerve through tremor, in my case a couple of standing tremors on the plane.
  • Hydrating, because.
  • Eating lightly and well — I am plant-based on transition days.
  • Looking forward to my scheduled nap.
  • Writing and thinking through my experience of the past few days at this conference.

This last piece, processing thought in writing is crucial for me but your review may be more meditative than verbal. In essence, how you reflect matters less than actually doing so. When I arrive at my destination there will be a little entry busy work after which I have scheduled a nap. This is non-optional for me and I highly recommend it. These bodies are amazing, they just need a little care.

Gina Razón is the principal voice specialist at GROW Voice LLC, a full-service voice and speech studio in Boston’s Back Bay.  She has over 16 years of experience both as a teacher of voice and speech, and a voraciously curious voice user.  Gina has worked professionally as a classical singer for over a decade and more recently as a professional public speaker.  For more information on the studio or to book Gina visit

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