Five Benefits of Learning to Relax

Life comes filled with challenges, stresses, responsibilities, and continues at an unbelievably fast pace. How do we get out of this cumbersome lifestyle? As Keith, Champlin and I drove from Texas to Colorado, I spent time doing just this. I relaxed and took an inventory of our time in San Antonio and Spring Branch. What was the most important thing we did in Texas? Where do the memories reside? Was it in the stuff that we did? Or was it the people we met? As I pondered our Texas stay, I began to see a pattern.

The pattern kept taking me back to the feeling I experienced whenever we enjoyed people. It was not what we were doing but the things that we shared with our fellow humans.  As we talked and shared stories, the one thing that remained consistent was how we felt when we embraced the bond we shared with each new person we met. That feeling was relaxation……….

Relaxation Benefit #1 – Being Present

Much of our lives are spent moving from one activity to another. As a society, we actively fill our schedules and are involved in countless activities with very little focus on ourselves. The constant state of busyness prevents us from appreciating the activity itself. We continuously thrust from one commitment to the next. By simplifying your schedule, you not only reduce stress; you gain relaxation, and you give yourself time to be “present” in the activity at hand. As a result, being present is much easier with fewer time constraints.

Relaxation Benefit #2 – Better Health

Practicing relaxation has a myriad of health benefits that are easy to forget. The human body truly appreciates the down time. Your heart rate is slower and your blood pressure is lower. Not only that, your digestion improves, blood sugar levels are better, stress hormones are reduced and blood flow, muscle tension, and chronic pain improve (Mayo Clinic).

Relaxation Benefit #3 – Increased Happiness

One of the most beneficial effects of improving relaxation is happiness. As you slow down your life and enjoy the people around you, your happiness hormones activate. With improved levels of hormones like serotonin, endorphins, and dopamine, you smile involuntarily, live life more fully, and enjoy your daily life more.

Relaxation Benefit #4 – Meaningful Relationships

By focusing on who you are spending time with and not what you are doing creates a connection with that person that flourishes regardless of the activity. Creating friendships and family ties, with a goal of truly listening and understanding that person, fosters a feeling of inclusion.  Remaining in a state of active listening will grow that relationship and help you focus on simplicity and with simplicity comes relaxation.

Relaxation Benefit #5 – Self-Love

When you relax, you forget our fast-paced lives even if for only a moment. By embracing relaxation, you give yourself permission to just “be” and in that state of “being”, you nurture your heart. By nurturing your heart, you are actively practicing self-love. By practicing self-love, you grow personally and create healthier relationships for yourself and the people you care about.