It’s Okay To Relax


Wiggle Room

Hey guys, if you’ve been following my posts so far then you realize that I really do want to help you help yourself. It’s having that in mind that pushes me forward today to elaborate on what “Leaping Wiggly Wednesday’s” post touched on lightly, but not enough to get the point across accurately.

The mark of a successful man is one that has spent an entire day on the bank of a river without feeling guilty about it.

-Chinese Philosopher/Unknown

 (Whomever you are, thanks for lending us the quote today.)

While our quote’s author is unknown, the quote’s meaning is something I agree with. The meaning also happens to be an idea by which I live my life everyday. I mentioned this and spoke of it briefly in our last post, but I feel it’s a disservice to you as well a bad thing to say without following up. Like everything anyone says, unless there is a very clear explanation of what is being said, it can mean two entirely different things based on a few words that weren’t said. (Food for thought: Know what you’re saying as well as attempt to hear it as if you were someone else who is five years old. This won’t always clear up problems, sometimes you need to hear specific questions in order to be able to clear up other people’s misunderstandings of you, whereas other times there may be no understanding regardless. It’s always better to take steps to avoid that if possible, though.) Before I continue on about the ease of misunderstanding, I’ll get on with today’s post. That is why you are here after all. 🙂

Everywhere we’ve gone in life, and everywhere we’ll go, there are and there will be difficult times. That’s just a fact of life, plain and simple. Typically, our reaction is to deal with it or not deal with it at all. There are a variety of actions people choose to take, and we could go over them in great detail in a later post. So assuming your choices are simple as: to deal with it or not, you’re probably going to have a very stressful reaction either way. The stresses of not dealing with it might not be as obvious or easily connected with the fact that you’re not doing anything when you need to be, but they’re there. No question about that. 🙂

Those problems that you have chosen to deal with can be pretty taxing. You’re always busy. If you’re not dealing with the new ordeal (for lack of better term) then you’re probably dealing with everything else like cleaning, hunting for food in the wilderness, talking with your friends/other, daily exercise, playing with animals, or taking care of your children.

Buddy, I get it. I know my daily routines, I know I have plenty to do nearly all of the time without something coming up.

Alright, so now you’ve got this extra ordeal to deal with on top of the daily routine, you now have negative time. You will not have time to do something that you need to do. This has gone from stressful to the brink of too much to handle. Truly, the typical person who tries to keep up with this type of schedule does eventually end up failing courtesy of a burnout.

The solution is one that hardly anyone ever recognizes, and those that do tell themselves it’s not a solution, but a problem that only serves to assist the growing size of the ordeal. You just need to relax.

RELAX? Are you kidding?! I’ve got some words for you mister!

While I’m sure most people won’t react the way I chose to portray you, some of you might (maybe not so exaggerated). The moment I typed that word, I put my likability in peril. But it really works, and I’ll tell you why now.

Everyday of our lives we are busy and we just become more and more stressed each day. As the stress accumulates over time, we find ourselves becoming heavily irritated or overburdened. If you live in America, you live in a society that continuously teaches you not to relax. In some places, the term relax is practically a sin. It’s thought to be synonymous with laziness. Relaxation is not bad for you, though. It can become bad if you relax too much, just like everything and anything else in your life. We must all practice good moderation, and this includes our behaviors. Relaxation, when practiced properly (meaning that you have a good ratio of activity to inactivity), can be very beneficial as proven by many studies and soon to be more as there are many more studies being done currently.

So, now that I’ve linked you to two other outside sources that advise relaxing, I’d like to tell you why I, personally, believe it is important for you, as well as good for everyone around you.

Simmer down friend

It’s difficult – and I know it is – to take a look at your life and tell yourself that you need to relax. It’s even harder when you’ve got so much going on that it makes you feel like relaxing is a bad thing.

I can promise you, that you’ll be able to come up with three reasons, if not more, for why you shouldn’t relax every single time you’d like to. The difficult part comes in with:

  1. Knowing when you need to
  2. Knowing that it’s more important to take an hour to yourself than it is to work yourself into the ground
  3. Knowing when to stop relaxing without ruining your relaxation time.

Once you’ve started taking time to relax, and once you’re able to tell yourself that you not only need to, but that it’s really okay to relax, you’ll become much happier and (surprise!) more productive.

Imagine yourself if you were, say, a laptop. Your laptop will be far more productive, as well as healthier if you turn it off when you’re done using it. It will be healthier if you give it breaks in between times of excessive use so as to allow the computer time to cool down. When you don’t allow these times for the laptop to have its own relaxation, you dramatically lower the life of the laptop, both in the long and short run. In the short run, the laptop has an equivalent to our burnout. (This is why I chose to use a laptop as opposed to a desktop for the example.) The laptop will, with very little (if any) warning at all, suddenly cease all operations and SHUT OFF. You? Me? Every other human in the world? None of us are any different when we are overworked for too long, with no breaks, and no time to relax for a bit. We will shut down, and there is typically no obvious warning for anyone other than you just moments before the whole crash. (See burnout for warnings for you/loved ones.)

Understood. Our daily stresses can be very dangerous to us. But I don’t have time to relax.

I really cannot stress this to you enough: It is important to make time.

You need to have wiggle room in life. If you’ve allowed your life to get so packed full of things that you’re not allowed time for mistakes, not allowed time to randomly jump into a lake and go for an unplanned swim, and generally not allowed to enjoy your life, it’s time to make making time a priority. Being able to wiggle is an amazing feeling. It’s the equivalent to breathing for me. You can either take healthy breaths and live well and happy, or you can continue as so many American’s do today, by taking short, quick breaths and hoping that it’s enough to keep you going a few more minutes.

Relaxing is important. Enjoy your life. This is the only time you’ll ever have this life no matter what you believe. Enjoy it, and be happy.

Be kind, do something nice for a stranger today.

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