Making Time for Relaxation

“There is a great deal of difference between an eager man who wants to read a book, and a tired man who wants a book to read.” ― G.K. Chesterton

The difference is, the eager man who wants to read is still working— his mind doesn’t stop. The tired man reads for relaxation after a stressful day.

You can’t be told enough that it’s important to relax and to take time for yourself. But, for some of us, that’s just impossible to do. We can feel like we’re missing out on events or meetings, or that there’s still work that we haven’t finished and should get a jump on. As an incredibly proactive academic college student, this hits me hard during the school year— so much so that I hardly think of or do anything else besides school work. What is fun? That’s a foreign concept to me. There’s work to be done.

Even in the summer, relaxation can be hard to come by, with working a summer job, juggling internships, or  attending summer classes. Here’s where vacation comes in: the crucial couple days to rejuvenate one’s sanity and body so as to prevent future mental and emotional breakdowns. There’s nothing like a good vacation. They can’t be the family ones to amusement parks though. Because, let’s be honest, those aren’t always relaxing. No, for me, I have to be at the beach.

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The beach is the one place where I feel completely at ease. Dipping your toes in the warm sand as the frigid water (I’m usually at Delaware…northern beaches are hardly ever warm) laps over your ankles, staring out into the blue that goes on for miles, breathing in the salt air that send goosebumps up and down your arms and legs. Is there nothing as perfect as just breathing in time with the tide as it ebbs and flows on the shore peppered with the sound of crashing waves and seagulls flying overhead? To me, this is relaxation.

“It does good also to take walks out of doors, that our spirits may be raised and refreshed by the open air and fresh breeze: sometimes we gain strength by driving in a carriage, by travel, by change of air…” – Seneca

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At the beach, I just walk up and down the shore line. Each step brings a new sensation of sand (whether hot or cold, deep or shallow, hard to soft) in between my toes, covering the pads of my feet, and makes me feel more like myself. For a few moments you believe that there is something bigger out in the universe, creating the feeling of pure peace and bliss that comes with the earth and its beautiful features.

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Life has a way of taking us over to the point where we don’t even realize that we’re exhausted just living day to day. Make some time for relaxation, whether it’s a walk on a beach, a hike through a forest, or just an hour reading, and keep on enjoying life…every minute. Maybe you’ll learn to appreciate the beauty around you a bit more and be the more in awe of it? I recommend the beach, because who doesn’t need an excuse to go to the beach?

 

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