Nearly everyone I know seems to have a problem with fatigue & inadequate rest. It’s the most common topic of conversation between my friends, family, and co-workers. We all wish we could get more restful sleep but for some reason, it never seems to happen.
It can be easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of everyday life and not take care of yourself. But we all know that resting is imperative for our bodies, minds, and spirits. Our stress levels are higher than ever, which makes rest even more important! We complain about lack of time, but honestly do we choose to rest even when we get the time?
Making time for adequate rest & relaxation is a choice.
Your calm mind is the ultimate weapon against your challenges so RELAXBryant Mcgill
5 benefits of rest & relaxation
1. Good mood makes great relationships
Researchers have found that individuals in a bad mood tend to be more aggressive and impulsive (we have all experienced this!!!!), whereas those in a good mood tend to be more friendly and thoughtful. It is important for us to maintain a good mental health in order achieve success.
A bad mood can be a real downer and it’s even worse if it lasts for days on end. Luckily, science has figured out that the way to get rid of this is by getting into a good mood.
First step – adequate rest and relaxation.
2. Keeps cortisol in check
While cortisol itself is not a negative hormone, it can have negative effects on your health if it’s constantly triggered.
When we are well rested and aren’t experiencing any major stressors, our bodies’ cortisol levels remain at normal levels.
However, if you are constantly worried about work or school or other factors that affect your daily life, then this can cause you to become stressed out. When this happens, cortisol levels rise and stay elevated for an extended period of time which has been linked risk for developing cardiovascular disease, reduced metabolism, obesity, depression and diabetes
Rest and relaxation keep cortisol under check.
3. Maintains Blood Pressure
Many patients who have high blood pressure are prescribed medication to lower their levels. However, these drugs can have serious side effects when taken over long periods of time.
Doctors recommend instead that these people find ways to relax and reduce the stress in their lives through activities such as yoga or meditation.
Engaging in relaxed walks in the park and reading are helpful in keeping blood pressure optimal.
4. Productivity & Efficiency
A relaxed mind will help you become more productive and efficient in the long run. Studies have shown that a stressful mind leads to poor productivity and focus, which makes it hard to accomplish tasks effectively. Quality of the output also suffers in the long run.
If you want to be productive in your work or study, it’s important to feel relaxed and comfortable. A clear and focused mind will always get more done than a cluttered and stressful mind.
5. Positive outlook on life.
A study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology revealed that people who relaxed more were better able to take on stressful situations.
A positive mental state has been proven to improve cognitive function and overall health, while negative emotions can reduce our ability to think clearly or rationally. Furthermore, it was shown that we are better able to cope with challenges when we feel positive rather than negative emotions.
6 Practical tips to rest and relax everyday:
None of the information above is brand new. What most lack is taking conscious actions to access all the benefits of rest and relaxation.
Let’s clear one thing, what you perhaps do on the weekends is laze around. That does not rest your mind. Achieving a rested & relaxed state of mind is a daily investment.
I assure you it’s not complicated. If you can set aside 15-30 mins consistently, you can achieve a fresh state of mind. Here are some things you can start doing from today and they are all FREE:
1.Soak in the early morning sun
There’s nothing like a good soak in the morning sun. The rays of sunlight warm your skin and body.
The importance of Vitamin D can’t be emphasized enough. Not only does it help with mental health, but it also helps you with your physical health by helping your body absorb calcium which is essential for building bones and teeth. Research has shown that an increased intake of Vitamin D may reduce your risk of developing heart disease, breast cancer, prostate cancer, ovarian cancer, diabetes, hypertension and multiple sclerosis.
Step into the morning sun for 10 mins daily or combine it with your morning walks.
2.Read a book, write a journal, indulge in a hobby
Reading or indulging in any other hobby is a great way to relax and recharge your mind. Keep it simple actively make 15 minutes time for it. In my experience, this daily hobby indulgence enhances the mood.
One of the best ways to relieve stress is writing in your journal. It allows you to express yourself and reflect on your experiences, which can help you cope with the daily life challenges.
A recent study found that people who had written about their deepest thoughts and feelings were less likely to experience common cold symptoms.
3. Eat freshly cooked meals
Eating home cooked meals is healthier for your endocrine system than eating packaged food. Processed foods have sodium and salt levels that are too high, which can cause hormonal imbalances.
Cooking is a great way to de-stress too. It has been said that when you cook, you are able to focus on the process of what you are doing instead of focusing on other things which may be stressing you out.
There you go, it’s two benefits in one!
Puzzle solving can help reduce stress and anxiety. Research also suggests that using puzzles can improve mental agility and even stave off Alzheimer’s disease by keeping the mind young.
Sudoku or other puzzle games are great ways to keep your mind sharp, improve executive functioning, and rest your brain from high stimulation activities.
Hey, solving the daily newspaper puzzle can help put your stress at bay by helping you laugh at the silliness of Garfield and his misadventures.
5.A daily 35 mins walk will do wonders for your mental & physical health.
Exercise can make you stress free, happy and improve your mood. The endorphins secreted by the brain during exercise help in relaxing and boosting your mood.
Exercise need not be complicated – The study found that walking just 35 minutes per day can significantly reduce symptoms of depression or anxiety. To maximize its effects, it is recommended that you walk outside rather than on a treadmill.
Don’t feel bad if you can’t manage 35 mins at a stretch, walk for 15 mins in the morning and 15 mins in the evening, get moving today!
6.Get adequate sleep.
The latest scientific research has confirmed that sleep is important in the development of the brain and cognitive functions. In fact, it has been shown that people who don’t get enough hours of rest are more prone to develop depression and an impaired memory.
I understand your challenge is not that you don’t know the importance of sleep but in getting adequate sleep.
A simple tip – Prioritize two weeknights for adequate sleep.
A relaxed mind is far more capable of handling daily challenges – whether it’s meeting a project deadline or getting over negative self-talk. For you, to perform your best, you need to be in a relaxed state of mind.
Lastly don’t confuse a rested and relaxed state of mind with a lethargic and lazy mind.
Invest in Rest today – Makes Sense, right?
If you are having trouble creating a practical schedule to accommodate adequate rest, hop on to a Free Clarity Call with me and I will be more than happy to co-create a solution that works for you.