Modern society, though encouraging of self-care, somehow manages to contradict that by promoting a busy lifestyle. Being swamped with work or personal affairs is unfortunately just part of life sometimes, but it’s when it becomes a habit that we run into trouble. And deep trouble. Stress reportedly causes over 80% of illnesses, aggravating conditions we’re pre-disposed to, and sabotaging the immune system.
It also wreaks havoc on the muscular system, which is directly affected by the nervous system. When we hold tension in our bodies, often without even realising we’re doing so, it can accumulate into causing trapped nerves, cramps, painful aches and even serious mobility issues. Taking time to relax is more than just enjoying time to rest, it’s a major part of self preservation. But just how important is it?
It keeps your stress levels in check
Stress in manageable portions isn’t actually unhealthy, it works to motivate us and keeps us on our toes, helping to maintain our energy levels in order to get tasks done. However, when it hangs around for long periods of time, it’s a sure sign that we either have too much on our plate, or are not recharging enough, (usually when you have too much on your plate, you don’t have time to recharge).
By dedicating time to truly relax, in which we clear our mind, lift off the weight from our shoulders and pamper ourselves, we reduce the amount of stress build-up and subsequently reduce the risk of illness.
It enables restful sleep
When we allow ourselves to relax and let go, we enable the mind to shut off for smooth sailing into sleepy shores. This means easy access to better quality sleep. Achieving restful sleep means undisturbed sleeping patterns, no tossing and turning and no bad dreams. Afterwards, we feel recharged, positive, and prepared for the day ahead. This has a domino effect, being that a good night’s sleep regularly leads to a good day, as we go about making better choices, having better reaction time and managing to maintain the ability to deal with situations reasonably and efficiently.
Being able to relax, especially before bed time, will improve sleep quality dramatically, helping to keep the mind and body balanced. When the mind and body are balanced, it prevents disruptive emotions from taking hold, almost like an invisible plate of armour.
Speaking of emotions
Taking time to relax encourages emotional wellbeing, elevating mood as tension and negativity leave the body. Not only does it promote positive emotions, it also works by subduing negative feelings, especially those related with stress.
It’s a memory aid
Relaxation enables quality sleep, which is the prime time for our bodies to go into growth and repair mode. This means all the damaged cells are being mended, including brain cells. As we sleep, information is being stored away neatly, new cells are being made and synapses are strengthening. In waking hours, this transfers to increased focusing capabilities and improved memory. Basically, relaxation does wonders for concentration levels.
It’s also relevant to note that being over-stressed interferes with the ability to store information wholesomely. Fragments of memories can become confused with other bits of information, causing us to completely forget important events, as well as creating an obstacle to retain new input.
Relaxation is vital for a healthy sex life
Your sexual well-being goes hand in hand with your overall physical, mental and emotional health. When we’re finding it hard to relax, the chances are we’re finding it difficult “getting any”. Whether it’s a time management issue, or a physical-mental issue, stress can be the cause of almost any sexual difficulty you can think of.
A common issue is a hormonal imbalance that directly messes with libido and thus sexual performance. In a way, that’s your body trying to help you. It’s deduced that you, in your stressed state, are in no fit shape to procreate, so by removing the desire or ability to perform, it’s reducing the chances of that happening.
To the body, stress means danger. It cannot distinguish where the stress is coming from or what’s causing it, and reacts as though the body is under threat. This impact on fertility can create even more tension and hostility within personal relationships. And unless you’re into some real kinky stuff, hostility doesn’t make matters easier when trying to achieve a healthy sex-life balance. In fact, stress is one of those weird issues that can not only affect your sex life, but also be alleviated by having sex.
So that’s simple right? Just have sex, it’ll fix everything! Not really. Sex is just one part of a variety of factors that affect and are affected by the presence of relaxation. Whether we’re getting any or not, the way to truly beat any stress-induced issues is by not worrying about it at all. Focus on balancing your life and creating “you time” for relaxation to occur, and the rest will gradually fall into place.
Help yourself and others: become qualified in Professional Relaxation Therapy
Professional Relaxation Therapy has been shown to improve the quality of everyday life by building the skills of resilience to adversity and stress. Our comprehensive course gives instructional insight into all areas of Relaxation Therapy. It is unique in its in-depth, holistic approach to the physical, mental, spiritual and recreational features of relaxation, making it the perfect complimentary treatment for any aspiring therapist or working practitioner.
Here at the School of Natural Health Sciences we are celebrating our 20th anniversary and currently have 3 special offers available which all involve FREE courses when purchasing either our super saver packs or individual courses. We now have 62 accredited holistic therapy courses which all carry internationally recognised qualifications.
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