We all need to take time to Relax


In a vintage 70’s commercial for Calgon bath and beauty products a woman wearing a fluffy pink robe is seen in a chaotic home scenario. As the phone is ringing, children are fighting and the dog is barking, she utters the slogan “Calgon take me away”….The next scene shows her relaxing in a bath in a quiet solitude. She recognized her limit. Some stress is necessary to add interest and motivation to life but the key to keeping healthy is balance. It is arguable that woman manage more stress than our friend in the pink fluffy robe but it is truth that Knowing how to relax is vital for health and well being, passion and joy can not successfully compete against unteathered anxiety and stress.

Do you recognize your limit? I have trouble, I’ve usually gone a few steps beyond my limit by the time I call “Calgon”. And when you do recognize where you’re heading what do you do about it, if a tub is not available? Maybe the answer lies in avoiding reaching your limit in the first place.
Helpful friends my suggest you need a nap, afterall it works and recharges whiney children. Sleep deprivation is a real problem for most women. But what if a nap isn’t the answer because it’s your soul that is tired?

Learn to prioritize and as a first priority take stock of how you are managing your physical being. Set a goal to eat a healthy diet, drink plenty of water and exersize. Healthy diet – there are so many opinions and books and theories it is stressfull just trying to decide what is right for you. Begin with a visit to your primary care physician, using your blood test results discuss some of the sensible plans available. The American Heart Association has several suggestions on what are the best menus for a healthier you. And unless there is a medical reason to rush start off gradually with small changes. Drink eight, 8oz glassess of water per day and see how you feel after a week.

Practice deep breathing and mindfullness techniques. Meditation can slow you down and allow you savour the moment. Smile, breath and go slowly. I’ve read that the goal of meditation isn’t to control your thoughts, it’s to stop letting them control you. Try a yoga class. Meditation and yoga has been known to really calm the stress filled soul.

Avoid toxic personalities and spend your time with positive thinkers. Everyone will expierence sadness and anxiety just avoid those who have unpacked and live there. Positive thinking isn’t about expecting the best to happen every time, but accepting that whatever happens is the best for this moment. Positive thinking leads to positive outcomes.

Disconnect, unplug whatever you want to call it but step away from electronic devices for a period of time each day. It is all too easy to become consumed with texts, voice mail, e-mails – today we take our work with us wherever we go- it’s literally in the palm of our hand. Following friends on social media can lead to unintentianal and unfair comparisons to our own lives. Just put it down or unplug it and breath while your away.

Participate in an acitivity or a hobby that you enjoy. Sewing, reading or cross county skiing  are valid hobbies. Gardening, Cooking, woodworking ….. share your acivities or hobbies that get you through!

Partake in regular massage therapy. The benefits of receiving bodywork treatments are many.
Regardless of the adjectives we assign to it (pampering, rejuvenating, therapeutic) or the reasons we seek it out (a luxurious treat, stress relief, pain management), massage therapy can be a powerful ally in your healthcare regimen. Experts estimate that upwards of ninety percent of disease is stress related. And perhaps nothing ages us faster, internally and externally, than high stress. While eliminating anxiety and pressure altogether in this fast-paced world may be idealistic, massage can, without a doubt, help manage stress. Benefits are decreased anxiety, enhanced sleep quality, greater energy, improved concentration, increased circulation and reduced fatigue.

Spend time with a pet. The Mayo Clinic utilizes animal-assisted therapy to help healing and lessen depression and fatigue. Our pets provide comfort and enjoyment and ask for so little in return.

Laugh often it will improve your health. Proven fact, laughter reduces stress and strengthens your relationships. Laughter strengthens your immune system and will improve your emotinal health. Share funny moments with friends, learn to laugh at yourself, host a game night and seek out playful people who laugh easily. Laughter relaxes the whole body, boosts the immune system, triggers the release of endorphins, prevents heart disease, burns calories and may even increase life span!

In a moment of stress you can try shouting, “Calgon take me away…” and other than a few strange looks there is likely to be little results. Have a plan in hand with some of the ideas above or try being proactive and see how that works for you before you reach that “Calgon” moment. How do you relax?

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