Relax: Don’t Do It!
This week’s blog is inspired by two conversations and a facebook post I sent out!
There’s loads of stuff out there right now giving us “inspiration” to help us relax and take time out. Generally people have good intentions but I feel like there needs to be some deeper thinking going on behind it all. I’m sick of being told to have a bubble bath and drink chamomile tea. Relaxation is individual to everyone. I ranted about this a little bit on my facebook page this week and loads of people got in touch to say that relaxation for them can be anything from screaming to their favourite heavy metal songs, cooking an amazing dinner and inviting loads of friends over, watching horror movies whilst eating your weight in dairy milk and going skydiving!
Relaxation is often talked about as doing calm and peaceful things like meditation and yoga (and don’t get me wrong I LOVE those things) but I also love dancing round my house to music more suited to a 1990’s night club. My husband relaxes by listening to rap music and pretending there is a drum kit in front of him – this does the complete opposite to me!
It doesn’t matter what you do to relax, as long as you do it!
When we’re relaxed we’re less stressed. That means we get creative, we are more open minded, more flexible and more adventurous. We see possibilities, life doesn’t feel like a chore. We build better relationships and feel more fulfilled. Relaxation can have a MASSIVE impact on our lives.
To quote Frankie Goes To Hollywood:
But shoot it in the right direction
Make making it your intention-ooh yeah
Live those dreams
Scheme those schemes
Got to hit me
Hit me with those laser beams
That’s so spot on. Because of the crazy, technology led, advertising filled, high flying lives we’re leading we actually now need to make a conscious effort to relax. If we don’t we end up overwhelmed, burnt out and numb.
I’ve worked with a client recently who feels like she’s just existing in her life. She wants to really feel her life, to get joy from it, to be excited by it and to constantly explore who she is. But she can’t because she’s stuck. She feels stuck in her job, in her relationship and in her motherhood. It’s not as though she doesn’t like those parts of her life, it’s just that she also needs to grow some more. She wants to grow some more. She wants to investigate, to do things that open her eyes, to be moved. To feel alive.
So again, to quote Frankie Goes To Hollywood, my advice to her was the lyric “make making it your intention”. My coaching is about helping people to live a life they love. That sounds cheesy and fake. I know that. But only you know what a life you love, would feel like. Think about it right now… go on… what would a life you love look like?
Well now, make it your intention. Don’t let it be a dream. Take action. Do something. Relax into it. Relax more in your life. Get creative, be open, dream, achieve.
If you’re feeling disconnected, overwhelmed or a bit lacklustre with life try setting some goals.
- Check in with how you want your life to feel, look, be…
- Then do SOMETHING to take you one step closer. Maybe you need to start a yoga class, maybe you need to dig up the garden and turn it in to a vegetable patch, maybe you need to quit your job, maybe you need to take a course, maybe you need to listen to some more heavy metal.
- Tell someone! Accountability really works and helps hold you to something! Telling someone also makes your actions more real and means you’re more likely to do something about it because you don’t want the person you told to judge you!
- If you want some help with this then get in touch!
Nature is pretty good at helping us relax too, you know. In a recent blog I wrote for the Huffington Post I talked about research from the University of Michigan which found that being in nature helps us to relax, improves our memory, increases our attention spam and improves cognition. How cool is that?! You can read loads more about the theory behind nature as therapy here.
If you feel overwhelmed, stressed out and disconnected from who you are as a person, what you want in life and how you feel; If you feel disconnected from other people and want to meet like-minded women who think and feel and experience things like you do; If you feel like you need more nature and more relaxation in your life then come along to my Reconnect: ecotherapy workshop. We’ll get creative, have fun, laugh, share stories and connect around a campfire. Obviously, there’s going to be lashings of hot chocolate and homemade cake (this is me we’re talking about!). You can find out more about my Reconnect: ecotherapy workshop here.
Watch This Space!
And watch this space! If this blog has struck a chord with you and you feel like making relaxation a priority is something you want to do then keep an eye out in the next few weeks for my online retreat club!