Thursday, January 15, 2015

Lessons on How to Relax

I'm terrible at relaxing. It's not exactly second nature to me. I keep thinking of all these ways I could relax and make my life easier, but it's not going to happen. At least it's not going to happen without a lot of effort. 

Earlier this week my husband booked a massage for me in an effort to help me relax. The morning of the appointment I was running around the house doing chores, and I shoveled the driveway. I was frantically trying to get things done so I could get out of the house and start my lone hour of relaxation. 

At the salon I was waiting, fidgeting and on my phone, thinking of some work projects coming up in a few weeks. When the massage therapist called me back I was a bundle of nervous energy, and my shoulder hurt from shoveling the driveway. It was starting out so well. During the almost hour appointment my mind never stopped wandering. I was thinking about work and my to do list and our trip to West Virginia this weekend. I was not distracted by the calming music or scented oil.

During the time where I was supposed to be relaxing, I started thinking about how that may be impossible for me. The only time I relax really well is when I'm away from home, and there are no tasks to be completed. I feel relaxed while running, but running itself isn't exactly a relaxing activity. Maybe some people just are not built to relax. I am one of those people.

One of my good friends keeps telling me she's going to give me lessons on how to relax. I'd have to relax long enough to take the lessons. Who has time for that? My life is moving at warp speed, and I'm training in vain to keep up with it. I do plenty of things to help my mind relax - the massage, mani/pedis, running, yoga. All of these things are designed to help me relax, but none of them actually help me achieve a state of relaxation.  I've come to the conclusion that relaxing is nearly impossible for me, and I've got to just embrace the chaos.

Webster's Dictionary (I literally looked this up in the physical dictionary on my desk...who does that?) defines "relax" as:  to release from intense concentration, hard work, worry, etc., give rest to [to relax the mind]. Given that definition I'm not sure I've ever fully relaxed, and I'm not sure I ever will. Perhaps I'll take my friend up on her offer of relaxation lessons. Until then I've got things to do. 

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