Learning How to Relax Again
You’re irritable, and you feel stressed? If you notice this inner restlessness in yourself, then it is time for relaxation. But do you even know what relaxes you? Maybe you think spontaneously of holidays, of the sea or the mountains. But those who don’t live in such places can’t experience all the time.
It is essential to take some time out throughout the day to relax. Sleep, which most of us certainly miss out on, is usually not enough. The stress you accumulate during the day gets processed during the night.
So it makes sense and is valuable for our body to take a break in everyday life so that it can regenerate.
What is the best way to relax?
Since people are all different, it is quite possible that even if you create a quiet environment for yourself, you will not succeed in relaxing. Maybe you feel your heart racing, a rumbling in your belly and constantly circling thoughts, so that you do not come to inner peace. Unfortunately, there is no button on the body that stops everything for us.
Some people have forgotten how to relax properly. Already from the 1st school year, we are under the performance pressure of society, which continues over the professional life up to the retirement age. I know pensioners that are almost as stressed as a 2-fold working mother. But you can breathe again because you can also learn to relax!
As soon as you come to rest, this almost insatiable restlessness sets in. Perhaps you can analyze for yourself where your nervousness comes from. May it be your job, problems with your partner or family, or health restrictions?
To overcome this pressure, you should consciously perceive the relaxation. If you do not feel the relaxation consciously, then you are not relaxed. That’s why an action film on TV, for example, is not relaxation. Even if the body comes to rest from the outside, we are feverish inside, blood pressure rises, the heart races, and we are possibly further away from the inner relaxation than during working hours.
Creating moments of inactivity
You need some patience and discipline to find what regenerates you. Maybe it would be enough for you to close your eyes for a few minutes to perceive the stress and then breathe it out. Usually, you can feel relatively quickly how inner contentment and harmony are created.
Yoga Nidra or imaginary journeys can also help you to relax. Maybe you prefer to paint mandalas. It should be an activity where there is no real benefit – except for relaxation.
Tension and relaxation
If this is too calm for you, you can also tighten individual body parts and then let go. At first, specific muscle groups are tense (not too strong that the musculature trembles), then you keep this tension short and then let go again. When tensioning, make sure that the breath can continue to flow and that you do not stop it. The relaxation phase should be at least twice as long as the tension phase (e.g., 5 seconds of tension to 10 seconds of relaxation). So take your time.
Start with your right hand. Put it on your fist, feel the tension in your hand and fingers, hold the tension, and then let go again. Then go on to the forearm and upper arm. Then switch to the left hand. From the left arm, go to the right leg (thigh, lower leg, foot) then to the left leg. Then to the bottom, belly and then the face.
Relaxation during yoga
The deep relaxation (Savasana) is part of every yoga class. You should not skip it! It is the most beautiful thing you can let yourself sink into. A yoga class without Savasana is missing something.
What happens during relaxation?
During relaxation, the energy (prana) created by the previous yoga practice is distributed in your body. Furthermore, your body reduces stress hormones, and your immune system is strengthened.
You don’t need to do anything yourself. The emphasis here is on “nothing,” so refrain from all movements, even scratching your nose. Let your thoughts go. Let go of all feelings, and enjoy being “ventilated.” In this state of relaxation, the breath will become flatter and very quiet. I can’t overestimate the value of this inactivity enough.
Integrating relaxation into everyday life
With a little time management, it is easy to do. Consciously plan 10 or 15 minutes in your calendar during which you take time for yourself and your relaxation or combine it with certain rituals. Say, whenever you go to the toilet, take a few minutes afterward, or whenever you have a glass of water.
If you have more time, you can also dedicate a whole day on the weekend to doing nothing. Do not make an appointment. Sleep well without an alarm clock. And then decide spontaneously what you or your body feels like doing. If you like to exercise, go for a walk in nature. Your senses will be happy. Observe consciously what you see, smell, hear, and feel.
Would you rather rest? Then lie down on the sofa and listen to relaxation music or go to the sauna if you like. Yin yoga or restorative yoga can also relax you.
Whether you want to relax for a few minutes or a whole day, switch your smartphone to flight mode or switch it off so you can concentrate on yourself.
Those who are always available digitally have a much harder time finding their center and peace.
What is your magic formula for perfect relaxation?