How to relax and recuperate when we think we can’t

I don’t know about you, but when I’ve had a phase of being very busy, it takes quite a bit of effort to relax again.

It’s a whole body and mind experience. Every cell is on speed, wants to continue running, do everything else but sit still or lie down.

The mind too, is racing from one subject to the next and tries to find super-urgent tasks that justify jumping up and giving this relaxation thing a miss.

Yet, after such a busy time, relaxation is what our being is longing for.

The body is deeply tired and wants to rest.

Instead it’s running, can’t sit still.

Stillness is too scary.

That’s where we have come to in today’s society. We can’t allow ourselves to recuperate anymore.

Running – running – running.

Drinking coffee or eating super-foods to maintain vitality over everything else – at all times.

Feeling guilty when we just want to do nothing, when we want to rest – and sleep.

6 hour nights have become the norm, even though we know that we need 8 hours sleep; and that the only way to recover from lack of sleep – is sleep.

Worse even, if you function on 4 hour sleeps per night you’re seen, by some, as a hero.

You might look like one.  However it’s detrimental to your body, mind and spirit.

It’s not sustainable – and you can’t think clearly anymore.

It might sound strange, but to get out of this merry-go-round takes a conscious effort.

You might wonder: “more effort?” or “it takes effort to relax?”

Yes, to relax and rest doesn’t happen by itself – at least at the beginning.

Your mind will resist, find all kinds of reasons why you can’t – are not allowed to relax.

But it can be done.

Here are a couple of things that help:

Set a timer for a period you feel comfortable with.

Knowing that the non-doing won’t be forever, the mind can relax a little bit. Don’t stretch yourself too far. Even 5 minutes are valuable.

Focus on your breath.

It’s a great tool to help you come back to yourself, to give the mind something to do.

You might feel your body resist. It wants to jump up at the slightest impulse.

You might watch your mind racing off – to a more dramatic and exciting movie than the rhythm of your breath.

When you catch it, acknowledge it for what it is, nothing needs to be changed.

Then come back to the breath.

Slowly, slowly the agitation in your mind and body will go a notch down – one step at a time.

They say every journey starts with a single step.

This is so true, and the smaller you make that first step, the easier it is to start.

But what if you feel like you can’t come down from the urgent business of modern life?

How do you deal with it when you’re caught up in ever pressing stuff?

Get in touch with me. I am here to help.