You know what? Sometimes, it’s nice to stop and relax.
When was the last time you relaxed?
Relax? Ha! I wake up, go to the gym, go to work, buy groceries, cook dinner, watch my favourite TV show and then – if I have the energy – crawl into bed like a stunned mullet, hoping to experience something resembling quality sleep.
Okay, I hear you.
I’m not suggesting daily spa treatments and full-body massages. (Although, that would be nice. I wouldn’t mind having a live-in masseuse. Very Mariah Carey-style.)
But, are you aware of the health benefits of relaxation? And I mean all of the health benefits? Surprisingly, it’s quite an extensive list.
Here are the usual things you probably already know.
- Reduce stress levels
- Decrease muscle tension
- Lower blood pressure
- Allow your body to rest and unwind
And here are the less-discussed benefits.
Relaxation can also:
- Improve concentration
- Boost immune system
- Eliminate headaches
- Promote healthy digestion
- Help to ward off insomnia
- Help to ward off depression
- Minimise skin breakouts (e.g. acne and psoriasis)
- Increase feelings of friskiness (Yes. That’s not a misprint.)
See? Devoting a tiny nugget of time each day to relaxation can do a variety of wonders for your mind and body. And taking a moment each day to relax might be easier than you think.
At the end of a busy day, incorporate a simple relaxation technique into your television-watching schedule:
- Submerge your feet in a foot spa. Warm water on your tired feet can have a wonderfully rejuvenating effect on your body. Add a drop of lavender or peppermint oil for a truly relaxing sensation.
- The latest technology in massage cushions and seat covers offer gel nodes which are soft and flexible like real hands, targeting sore muscles in a very gentle and life-like way. Watching your nightly TV program while receiving a shiatsu shoulder massage brings new meaning to the phrase ‘sit back and relax’.
Perhaps you have time for relaxation at the beginning of the day, rather than the end?
- Go for an early morning walk. Fresh air is surprisingly invigorating, and exercise promotes the release of endorphins. Your muscles will loosen up and you’ll be ready to embrace each challenge the day throws at you.
- Instead of haphazardly gulping down your coffee while you brush your hair, apply your mascara and throw together a packed lunch, set your alarm ten minutes earlier than usual and take your cup of coffee outside onto the balcony or into the garden. Stand still for a few minutes and enjoy the early morning breeze or the sound of the birds. Or, if you overlook a highway and don’t particularly want to listen to the drone of semi-trailers as they rumble along, grab some headphones and listen to a favourite tune. Drink your coffee slowly and enjoy it, before jumping into the hustle and bustle of the day.
So, stop and take a moment to let your mind unwind. Do something each day that works best for your lifestyle, and see if you feel a difference in your energy levels and mindset. Need more ideas? Check out Harvey Norman’s range of relaxation products for inspiration.