Relaxing is a skill you can learn

Health

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On the 10th of October, it’s World Mental Health Day. The last few months have been quite unsettling, with many of us feeling anxious and uncertain. The ability to find inner calm is now more important than ever. 


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All work and no play is not good for your wellbeing, something we seem to have lost sight of in today’s busy-busier-busiest society. And yet, relaxation is vital for a healthy balance. There are many different ways to relax, but what works for one person, may not necessarily work for you. So, try and experiment until you find what suits you. 

Exercise is probably one of the best-known ways to relax. And no, that doesn’t mean you have to throw yourself into CrossFit or start preparing for a marathon. Just going for a walk or a bike ride already does wonders for your wellbeing. Find a sport that suits you and don’t see it as a chore, but as a fun activity you choose to do. Tell yourself that you give yourself permission to spend your time doing this. Chances are that you will be able to maintain your exercise regime a lot easier this way. 

Another way to relax is through touch. What’s more, it’s one of the basic needs of human beings. Treat yourself to a massage once in a while. Look up how to give yourself a relaxing hand massage or check out the wide range of massages we offer and let yourself be pampered. 

You can also relax by engaging in creative activities: draw, paint, sew or potter around in the garden. Just try it, you will see how relaxing this can be. 

Too many thoughts swirling around in your head that are preventing you from being able to totally relax? There are lots of handy tricks to deal with this!  

For instance, make a list of all the things you still want or have to do. Make sure to keep writing until you have put absolutely everything down on paper, totally clearing your head. Now, divide your list into several new lists. One with things that have to be done, but that you don’t like doing yourself. Let’s say, ironing. Find someone to delegate these things to: hire a cleaning lady, book an ironing service and order your shopping online at one of the click-and-go retailers. Next, put all the things you would like to do one day, but don’t know when yet, on another list. For instance, elephant spotting in the wild or clearing out your loft. Once you have made this list, read through it one more time and then let it go. None of these things are urgent, so it’s pointless wasting your energy on them. Finally, make a list with things that you can set actual deadlines for, like buying a present for your nan’s birthday in three weeks’ time or booking your car’s MOT. Put these deadlines in your diary and make any appointments you can make there and then. That way, those thoughts, too, no longer have to fill up your head. 

Another way to declutter your mind is to write down every negative thoughts you might have. And then, try to put a positive spin on them. For instance, ‘I still have to exercise, but I don’t feel like it’ becomes ‘I’m going to do some exercise because it gives me energy’. Or ‘I still have to tidy up, but I’ve got so many other things to do’ becomes ‘I’m going to tidy up tonight because a tidy living room makes me feel calm and happy’. Just try it! 

How do you relax? 


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