Relax: How to Make Time for a Time Out
“What do you do to relax?”
I once asked this to a group of women and got the reply, “Relax. What’s that?”
In this “hurry up” society when everything is at our fingertips, and Starbucks will now have our coffee ready when we arrive, we don’t know how to relax. Stress relieving activities. What are those? And if we knew them, why would we do them? We don’t have time!!
Recently I let myself get overwhelmed by all the things, and I’m assuming you have done that too. No matter what time of year it is, there is always a break on the horizon. Summer break. Spring Break. Winter break. You may not have a beach vacation planned, but that doesn’t mean you and I can’t find time in our day to relax, decompress, or take a time out.
Too often people think they have to take a vacation, go to the beach, or camp out to relax. But even then, they’re tied to their iphones, ipads, electronics, etc. They may also make a schedule for the entire vacation of when and where to be so they can get it all in.
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So how, in our everyday lives, do we build in time to relax, decompress, or take a time out? In this day and age driven by stress, HOW can we build in some relief?
Breathe – No really, just BREATHE. Take a minute, seriously, just one minute, and focus on your breath. Feel and hear the inhale. Feel and hear the exhale. It can be calming. It can help you focus and get you centered. Eventually the minute will extend to two minutes then five minutes. Then maybe you can think of doing this upon waking and before going to bed and anytime throughout the day when you realize you need to focus or need a time out.
Read – Find a book of five minute devotions or scripture readings. You may enjoy poetry or even a few pages of a novel.
Get outside – Take a leisure walk. Maybe take your lunch outside. Open your blinds or windows if you can’t get outside. Let the sun shine in!
Gratitude – Take note of things for which you are grateful. Keep a journal. When you lay down at night or wake up in the morning, write down 3-5 things that you are thankful for.
Self-Care – Soak in a warm bath. Schedule a manicure or pedicure. Or just take 15 minutes to do your own nails. Massage.
Now when are you going to do this?
You can start with five minutes.
- Try getting up five minutes early.
- Instead of mindlessly scrolling social media close your eyes and breathe for a couple of minutes.
- When you are out doing errands, just park a little bit farther away and walk to your destination. Feel the warm sun or the breeze as you go.
So whether you’re on a beach this week or working 9-5, do yourself a favor and take a time out. Relax for a minute. I dare you!
Be sure to come over to my Facebook group and share how you’re taking care of yourself.
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It’s hard to remember to take time for yourself especially when your kids are younger. Just taking a bath or escaping for a manicure does really help. Good tips
You’re right. It doesn’t have to be something major. My evening hot tea about an hour before bed helps me to begin to unwind from the day and cues me to put my feet up for a few minutes and unplug.
These are all great tips/ideas! I used to be really bad about giving myself a break, but I’ve definitely gotten better at finding a balance over the years! I need to wake up a tiny bit earlier each morning again. :] Maybe I can sneak in some extra de-stress time while I stretch!
It’s definitely something you realize more and more as time goes on that you just can’t go very long without some downtime. Maybe now that school is over for you, you will be able to take a break a little more regularly. You’ve had quite an intense schedule for awhile!
Great post and I really need to do all of these! Thanks for sharing!
Thanks for stopping by Crystal! We not only do ourselves a favor when we take a little bit of a time out, it’s good for those around us. I know I’m a better wife and mom when I realize my need for a break. Enjoy a few moments to yourself.