Relax your Mind, Body and Soul

During hectic times, it’s tough to remember that relaxation is more than a luxury. In fact, humans need to relax to maintain balance in their lives. Work stress, family strife, and mounting responsibilities can exact a tremendous toll. Relaxing should be at the top of the list as a healthy coping measure and as a rewarding self-gift. Why do we so often neglect this healing self-care? Do you know the healthiest ways to relax your mind, body and soul?

Perhaps the biggest obstacle to relaxing is that some of us have a difficult time slowing the treadmill we put ourselves on daily. Even getting off it temporarily may be problematic. After all, we tell ourselves, there’s just so much to do and so little time to get it all done. No wonder we’re frazzled, anxious, fearful, worried and vulnerable, sometimes at the same time.

In our increasingly connected society, where time is our most precious commodity and business success is measured by our levels of productivity and efficiency, it’s easy to want to “power through” life’s setbacks and keep on top of our daily work. When you’re going through the healing process though, only complete rest will ensure that you’re able to bounce back to 100% — and that rest involves every aspect of your being, body, mind, and soul.

Here are some things to remember the next time you have that urge to “power through” and ignore your need to rest, relax, and recharge.

Don’t be Patient X / Ground Zero

We’ve all had experiences with that one coworker who insists on coming in, even though it’s fairly – sometimes painfully – obvious that they’re still recovering from their ailments. They may do so out of a sense of duty, and/or because they feel it’s an admirable gesture to their workplace and team.

… It’s not. Don’t be that person who puts their coworkers at risk of getting sick. Even the thought of being in close proximity with someone who may be contagious isn’t a very pleasant one. Do yourself and your team a favor – stay away until you’re back to 100%.

Email Is Endless

It’s better to accept this fact now and work around it, rather than trying to beat it: if you work, especially if you work in the corporate world, then you should know that email is endless. There is no “Inbox Zero,” at least for the long term.

People will always be reaching out to you, at all hours of the day and night, and even on weekends. This is true for email as well as with messaging applications, from texting to social media. If you’re out sick and constantly checking and responding to your messages, you’re setting an unrealistic expectation of your involvement in these conversations – you may be able to keep up with some but eventually, you’ll begin to slow down and not keep up with others. This isn’t fair to you or to the others you’re communicating and working with.

For emergency situations, ask them to call you. Otherwise, let them know you’re out, provide them with realistic options for follow up, then disconnect. Which brings us to the next point.

To truly disconnect, start with your brain

It’s easy to physically disconnect and unplug from all the ways you interact with others: you can turn off your wifi and computer, silence your phone, and avoid social media. But for those used to a high level of productivity on a daily basis, mentally disconnecting may be easier said than done.

When you’re at home, away from the distractions of the office – phone calls, email, meetings – you may feel the need to take advantage of this “downtime” and think through some projects and other work you otherwise wouldn’t have as much time for, on a regular day. This in of itself is still leaving you connected to your work, and not allowing your mind to completely clear itself so your body can recover.

Your body has a natural signal to your brain when it needs that healing time – if you feel the need to sleep, do so. Don’t fight it. If you’re tired and/or weak but your brain is still going a hundred miles per hour, take measures to slowly wind down and relax. Take a shower, read a book, watch a little Netflix; your brain, and body, will thank you for it.

Taking the time to rest, relax, and recharge does wonders for you, on all levels: mind, body, and soul.

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