Today I have been thinking about relaxing, I know many of us have forgotten what relaxation is thanks to hectic and demanding lives however if you have the opportunity to what would you do to totally relax?
It occurred to me that different methods are required at different times, for example a cup of tea in a peaceful and nearly silent house on a day off once the boys have gone to school is hugely relaxing on some days but on others putting on some very loud music and singing at the top of my voice actually brings my blood pressure down enough that it totally relaxes me ( I defy anyone to not feel better after screaming ‘rhythmically’ to Beyoncé or Mariah Carey!)
As I have got older relaxation has definitely changed for me, before I had children like so many other non parents I took for granted the time and freedom to do as I pleased. Trip to the cinema, long lay in, night dancing till the small hours, eating out at a lovely restaurant were all things I did and enjoyed but never savoured as much as I do when given the opportunity now.
I think the older you get the more likely relaxation is to be in the form of something that you love and want to do more of. I love spending time with my friends and can’t think of anything better than a trip to the local spa for a few hours with treatments and then a lunch in town. This sadly though happens only once or twice a year due to children, shift work and ever full diaries and calendars. I would love to know how the Sex and the City girls managed to maintain such social lives through marriage and children!
The last time the girls and I had a spa day we were drinking prosecco at ten am and I had fallen asleep by five pm but what an amazing day! This was the day I discovered rose and elderflower cordial added to prosecco and quite frankly haven’t looked back since!
I like to be creative and find all manner of craft activities relaxing, we know how much I love faffing with flowers and making my home pretty and also how much I like to doodle, write and draw. All of these things at certain times have been great stress relievers and for that reason I have a chest of drawers bursting with bits and pieces, pens, nice paper and glitter glue (who doesn’t love glitter glue).
I think though the thing that relaxes me most is time, knowing that I have time to be doing whatever it is I’m doing and ideally it’s doing something I love. Right now my ideal would be sat in the sunshine with a nice view to look out at surrounded by the people I love and lots of laughter and if I had a glass of something nice in my hand that would just round the scene off!
A cup of tea and a lovely person to drink it with is another, how much I look forward to seeing one of my great friends who although we go to eachothers houses for our children to spend time together and to catch up in general the time we spend chatting over a cuppa I really cherish.
I find that some of the classic relaxation techniques such as a nice bubble bath really don’t work for me, in theory I love the idea but I get too hot, then make the water too cold, then drop my tea in, slip over trying to reach for my magazine and then end up getting out usually to a boy shouting ‘mummy, there is an alien in my bedroom!’ Or at that very moment Karl realises he has lost his drill, angle grinder, socket set, receipt for a parcel, wallet, pen, return slip from online shopping…. I could go on (can you tell that happens a lot?!)
I am reminded of an episode of Friends where Chandler and Ross have been trying to recapture their youth by going out to a club with Joey and find themselves back at Central Perk,
‘CHANDLER: Y’know what? We’re not sad, we’re not sad, we’re just not 21 anymore. Y’know? I’m 29 years old, damnit! And I want to sit in a comfortable chair, and watch television and go to bed at a reasonable hour!’
Anyway, have a lovely evening and try to relax in whichever way suits you best, I would love to hear your favourites!