Rested? Pondered over a cup of tea? Stared out of the window to watch the clouds? Stood and listened to birdsong? Went for a walk with no aim in particular – just for the love of it? Sat and let your feelings come and go with no judgement?
Recently? Not in ages? Never?!
If this isn’t something you regularly do, I’m not judging you! I know how difficult it can feel to pack into your days all the activities you need and want to do – let alone finding time to do nothing!
But … this do-nothing-in-particular time is actually really important.
And the fact it is usually overlooked and not allowed in our lives is contributing to the high levels of stress and anxiety as well as fatigue and niggly illnesses in modern life.
Why? Because rest is essential to bring our bodies and minds back into balance.
It brings our bodies out of the stress response which modern-day life puts us into, and into the relaxation response where our body can rest, digest and heal. Rest balances the nervous system and soothes the mind. Read more…
Why oh why does our culture glorify busy-ness so much? We’re supposed to struggle, to push through our comfort zones, to do, to achieve, to climb the ladder. Blah, blah, blimmin’ blah. Whatevs. We’re not meant to want to relax in calm contentment.
Well do you know what? I can’t be bothered. It all sounds way too overwhelming and tiring for me, sensitive soul that I am.
I’m not lazy. I work hard – and yes, I find myself pushing too (and wind up exhausted when I do).
So I’m standing up for slowness. For gentleness. For kindness. For sensitivity. For time to relax and notice the simple pleasures in life. Read more…
Someone recently asked me, “how do you shake off the guilt when you stop and relax”?
A very good question that got me thinking…
I’d posted a message on my Facebook page from Action for Happiness “Stop the Glorification of Busy” with the advice “It’s OK to give yourself permission to stop and do nothing. In fact it’s ESSENTIAL for your physical, emotional, mental and spiritual wellbeing. So go on … be a radical and give yourself time just to be…”
But yes, it’s one thing having time to relax, it’s quite another allowing yourself to relax isn’t it? Read more…
“Joy to the world!” So exclaims the Christmas carol. Are you feeling joyful at the moment?
So many people I speak to at the moment are feeling tired, full of cold, wishing the days away until their Christmas break – as well as slightly (or openly!) dreading the amount of work Christmas entails.
…The shopping, the wrapping, the presents, the keeping-everyone-happy-but-forgetting-about-yourself push, push, push of the festive season.
I’ve found myself grumbling about Christmas too – I don’t feel Christmassy, I wish the weather was more seasonal, I’m fed up of Christmas already because it’s been around in the shops since the start of November… Bah humbug! Read more…
Life can seem like such an uphill struggle sometimes.
Too much to do, not enough time.
Arguments with the family, friction at work.
Worries about your or your family’s health.
The media telling you should eat this and not that, that you should exercise like this and not like that. That you’re drinking too little, not enough. That you should be doing such-and-such for a happy life, live somewhere else, feel different, be different. Argh!!!
You crave a way to find a moment’s peace; to drop the angst and self-judgement and find some serenity. Read more…