“Permission to relax – granted!”
Aah! The wonderful yet oft disgraced art of relaxation! Seriously. Has anyone ever uttered this sentence to you?
And why is it so hard to surrender to downtime in the first place? To just s-l-o-w down?
Do you ever feel a sense of impending doom if you don’t keep up the pace? It’s quite absurd, isn’t it? This modern life ‘urgency’. It can leave us feeling pressurised to perform constantly.
It isn’t all bad of course. You need to be dynamic and positive in your own unique way in order to have an edge. That’s normal. Because without the drive to participate in life, then nothing makes sense.
What’s not so good, is the feeling that we can never put our shoulders down. That when we do decide to pull down the shutters, take our foot off the pedal and put up the ‘Closed for lunch’ board, this ‘turbo-boosted superhero’ work ethic kicks in and makes us feel – ever so slightly – lazy?
Well, there’s no time like the present time for putting that little myth to rest.
So here are FIVE great reasons why you should be taking your down time more seriously and making it a real priority;
1. Your body needs regular recovery time.
Is your body telling you something? You already know that busy or stressful times need to be followed by quiet ones. That a flat battery serves no purpose at all. So indulge yourself with some wonderful treats when your body needs them most; healthy food, great company, massage, fresh air and some mental P & Q too.
WORK – RELAX – SLEEP – REPEAT
2. Your family will thank you.
I don’t know about you, but a big sign for me that I’m not coming up for air often enough is when my family feel as though they have faded very slightly from view. As a Mum who prides herself on being at the centre of everything family related, this is always an urgent wake up call.
Don’t allow a busy life to constantly take you away from what’s truly important – time enjoyed with loved ones. Missed Birthdays, landmark moments and plain old PJ’s and pizza infront of a favourite movie just can’t be recovered later on.
3. You can refocus on what makes you happy.
Do you ever have those crazy, happy moments when everything feels as though it’s going exactly as you want it to? Aren’t they great? But these moments never happen when we’re nose deep in company reports, or pulling together a hundred threads of our lives simultaneously.
They tend to happen when you’re chilling out somewhere and suddenly, through the haze, you get the instantly recognisable warm fuzzies.
Whether it’s time alone with your partner, your gorgeous family, hiking in Nature, painting at dawn on the beach… whatever it is that makes your heart soar and feel free, these crucial elements of your life should be savoured as often as possible.
4. Goals and life purpose will become clearer.
Similarly; have you noticed that everything feels clearer in your head when you’re feeling relaxed? Anxiety fades, and suddenly your goals and dreams seem a whole lot more attainable too. Ker-ching!
5. Perspective on current challenges will improve.
Just as our night-time worries always seem less terrifying in the morning, you can be sure that any challenges in your life will be far more manageable when taken with a dose of downtime. It’s why time spent in Nature is the perfect pick-me-up for all sorts of human anxiety. It’s why breaking out of your usual routine and dropping into first gear can also throw some great new light on perplexing matters.
Whether you’re the CEO of a multi national enterprise, a busy entrepreneur scaling the heights or a single parent coping alone – you’re still going to need downtime. This is one of life’s greatest levellers – the universal need to recharge our batteries in order to flourish and thrive in whatever we choose to do.
When was the last time you allowed yourself some hard earned downtime? Tell us how you disengage from the never ending demands of life in the comments box below. We’d love to hear your tips?
And if you’d like to continue reading on related topics, take a peak at these earlier posts:
Originally published at www.sarah-virag.com