What do you think when you hear the word, “Relax?” Or what comes to mind when thinking about how to slow life down?
Sitting on a front porch swing on a warm summer afternoon? A warm bubble bath with your favorite book? Curled up under a cozy blanket on the couch watching your favorite show? Or, perhaps these images make you laugh when you think about the reality of your own chaotic life juggling work, kids, extra activities, dinner, etc.
We know it may seem impossible to give up on all the “crazy” of life, but there is something to be said about a little R&R every now and then.
Benefits of Slowing Life Down
Relaxation truly can be one of the greatest things you can do for your overall health. It releases stress, calms your body, and gives your mind a chance to stop and catch up to the world around you. True relaxation also has other related health benefits, including:
- Lowering your heart rate, blood pressure and breathing rate.
- Reducing muscle tension and chronic pain.
- Improving concentration and mood.
- Decreasing fatigue.
- Reducing anger and frustration.
- Boosting confidence to handle problems.
When it comes down to it, how do you begin to slow down in a fast-paced world? Read on as we provide you with practical and manageable tips for introducing relaxation into your routine.
Seek One Restful Activity
We often set lofty goals when we want to try something new. If incorporating all kinds of relaxation activities completely changes your entire routine, you may set your goals too high and give up altogether. Choose one restful thing to add into your life starting with one week.
Don’t overcommit yourself to habits you can’t maintain. Simply seek to schedule one restful activity next week and decide if it’s manageable enough to continue. Here are some great ideas to choose from:
- Schedule an Ashiatsu massage therapy appointment at Camino Massage.
- Pick one night this week to turn off the screens and get outside.
- Pick one book that you would like to read this month.
- Select one day this week to try and sleep in or have a long breakfast — don’t plan anything in your schedule before 10 a.m.
Schedule Rest to Slow Life Down
Rest will never naturally find you if this fast-paced world has gotten hold of you and your family. You have to be intentional with placing it in your schedule and sticking to the appointment or activity.
Finding true rest also means building margin into your daily routine. Instead of packing your schedule down to the minute, give yourself a 20-30-minute space between meetings or activities and use that time to take some deep breaths, do some stretches, sit and talk with a friend, or drink a cup of water or tea.
Sleeping also gives your body the power it may need to keep going throughout the day. While taking a 1-hour nap may not be realistic in your day, it may be helpful giving yourself 15-20 minutes for a power nap. There are power nap apps like PZIZZ that allow you to set the number of minutes and the app guides you into a restful doze.
Change Your Perception on Going Slow
Somewhere in our culture, the idea of rest and relaxation has gotten lumped under the category of laziness. Relaxation has become a shameful word associated with not working hard.
The reality is, regular relaxation has a much greater impact on your productivity than staying busy. In fact, in a 2017 Harvard Business Review article, the psychological and physical problems of burned-out employees cost an estimated $125 million to $190 billion a year in healthcare spending in the United States.
A simple prescription for preventing burn-out is regular relaxation. So start by changing the conversation and changing the way you think about rest and relaxation. Practice more self-care and consider that the most productive thing you can do.
. . .
Relaxation is beneficial to your physical and mental health as well as your productivity. Yet it is often the first thing that we forget to prioritize.
Let this be a gentle reminder to schedule time to be still, quiet, healthy, and focus on relaxation as. Visit our blog to learn additional relaxation and wellness tips on how to slow life down and be sure to schedule that massage with our massage therapists in Colorado Springs today!