- National Relaxation Day
- Amazing Facts About The Power Of Relaxation
- Risks Of Not Getting Enough Relaxation
- Ideas For Relaxation
- Did You Know?
- Final Thought
Slow down… breathe, and relax. Have you been feeling stressed lately? This is a feeling that more and more of us are becoming familiar with. Life poses so many challenges from a variety of things and can often feel like you have the weight of the world on your shoulders. This is why National Relaxation Day is so important. It gives us the chance to unwind and focus on nothing but pure relaxation.
NATIONAL RELAXATION DAY
National Relaxation Day is the brainchild of Sean Moeller, who came up with the idea for this holiday in 1985. Sean was only nine-years-old when he suggested that a national day be created so that people can relax, but despite his young age, he knew how important it is to rest. At the time, Sean gave an interview to The Des Moines Register stating that people should not do any work or cleaning on National Relaxation Day, as those things are not part of relaxation. Eventually, National Relaxation Day inspired its British counterpart, National Slacker Day, which was founded in 2001.
In all, National Relaxation Day is a vital day for everyone. We all need to have a break from time to time. We can’t deny that life seems to be lived at a faster pace than ever before. We all have responsibilities. This could be work responsibilities, family responsibilities, financial responsibilities, or a combination of them all! We can put so much stress and pressure on our bodies and minds, and this is why we all need to take time to recuperate so that we do not burn out.
AMAZING FACTS ABOUT THE POWER OF RELAXATION
A lot of people, particularly people living in the U.S., are reluctant to take a day off of work to do absolutely nothing. That’s because taking downtime is sometimes seen as being lazy or unambitious. However, nothing could be further from the truth. Relaxation is a very important part of life and helps people to be more productive in the long run. To prove my point, here is a list of some of the most fascinating facts regarding relaxation.
- Relaxation Can Lower Blood Pressure: One of the most interesting facts that we’ve learned is that relaxing regularly can help lower blood pressure.
- Relaxation Can Lead To Better Mental Health: A wide range of different scientific studies have all come to the same conclusion: regular relaxation can lead to better mental health and relieve the symptoms of stress-induced conditions. Conditions can include depression, anxiety, headaches, pain related to fibromyalgia, insomnia, and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
- Relaxation Can Improve Memory: In 2010, a study came out that showed an understanding of the mechanism by which relaxation neurons in the brains come together to improve memory. This study concluded that clearer and more long-lasting memories are formed in a person’s brain when they’re completely relaxed.
- Relaxation Improves A Person’s Mood: Another study concluded that relaxation techniques such as meditation or Tai Chi could improve a person’s movement and can contribute to psychological well-being. Relaxation improves a person’s emotional state and that can lead to a better overall mood.
- The Immune System Gets A Boost From Relaxation: It’s also important to state that the immune system gets a much-needed boost from relaxation. This is because stress hormones interfere with the body’s ability to fight off infections, so taking some time to relax can help clear out those hormones and improve overall immune function.
- Relaxation Improves Productivity: The final point to make is that people who relax regularly are more likely to be more productive. It might seem counter-intuitive, but giving employees a little bit of extra downtime can help them get more work done in the long run.
RISKS OF NOT GETTING ENOUGH RELAXATION
Stress is a part of everyday life. It can be a helpful thing that motivates people to act, and can even save your life in a dangerous situation. Most stresses we experience are small, like getting caught in traffic on the way to a party or losing an earring on the train to work. The same helpful “fight-or-flight” instincts we get from these small stressful events in our life can backfire on us if we don’t take time to relax. Relaxation doesn’t just feel good, it’s also important for good health.
Stress from work, family, social obligations, and even exercise will wear you out over time if you don’t set aside time to relax. Some of the negative effects of not relaxing enough include:
- Frequent headaches and pain throughout the body
- Sleeping problems, such as insomnia or nightmares
- Forgetfulness and confusion
- Chest pain and heart problems
- Stress-related illness
- Increased or decreased appetite, often with weight gain or loss
- Social isolation and loneliness
- Increased use of drugs, tobacco, and alcohol
- Crying spells and feelings of depression, sometimes with thoughts of suicide
- Loss of interest in punctuality and appearance
- Increased irritability and overreaction to small annoyances
- Poor performance at work or in school
IDEAS FOR RELAXATION
Here are but a few ideas of many possible options you may want to use not just today but every other day.
- Take some time away from the screens: While social media and the internet have many benefits, you can also quickly feel overwhelmed and stressed by constantly being bombarded with news and posts about other people’s lives. Put your phone or computer away, and do something that relaxes you, such as reading, painting, or cooking. Especially avoid any screen time before bed, as it can mess with your sleep patterns.
- Try meditating: Many people swear by the power of meditation in helping decrease stress and improve our well-being. The best thing is that you can meditate anywhere! A good place to start is by downloading one of the many apps that guide beginners through the practice of meditation.
- Focus on your breathing: Learning to breathe more deeply can help you feel a lot calmer. It takes just a few minutes and can be done anywhere.
- Exercise Regularly: Regular exercise can increase self-confidence, improve your mood, help you relax, and lower symptoms of mild depression and anxiety. Exercise can also improve your sleep, which is often disrupted by stress, depression, and anxiety.
- Spend time in nature: Spending time outside and in green spaces can be great for your physical and mental health.
- Do something you love such as listening to music or reading: Both have been proven to help with relaxation, as they offer an escape from stress and everyday life. Studies have shown that classical music slows the heart rate and lowers blood pressure.
- Write down your thoughts: Getting things off your mind by writing them down may help you relax. When you feel stressed, take a few minutes to write down some short notes about how you’re feeling or how your day is going. You might do this in a notebook or a notes app on your smartphone. Don’t worry about being poetic or spelling everything correctly. Just focus on expressing yourself to help release some of your stress
DID YOU KNOW?
Those stress-induced chocolate cravings may be justified after all. Studies show that eating dark chocolate may lower levels of stress hormones. Cocoa is rich in a class of antioxidants called flavonoids, which have been linked to many health benefits. Researchers also say dark chocolate appeared to have beneficial effects on the participants’ metabolism and microbial activity in the gut.
National Relaxation Day is an important day as we all need a break from the fast-paced and often hectic lifestyles we live. Taking time to recuperate and rejuvenate our tired minds and bodies may help prevent many health risks, too. It has been proven that stress can be harmful to our health, both mentally and physically. Most doctors will agree that finding ways to relax and finding ways to reduce stress will improve overall health. What is your favorite relaxation activity?