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Showing posts with label relaxing. Show all posts
Showing posts with label relaxing. Show all posts

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Relax And Renew-It's Up To You!


Greetings and Felicitations!

Today I want to talk about something that we rarely do, or rarely do well--relax! If you are like me, you have that inner agenda inscribed on your mind. Therefore, even if you do sit down for a little bit, perhaps from exhaustion, do you really unwind? That is my friend Renee, above, a yoga instuctor, doing just that!

Here are some tips that I have gleaned over the years.

1) Don't watch the clock, and remove your watch occasionally. This will slow you down.

2) Take a "Zen" break, close your eyes and count your blessings while waiting in line, or waiting in general.

3) Stretch, this relaxes the tension in your body. Inhale and lift your shoulders up to your ears, then exhale and loser them.

4) Listen to music, keep is soft--New Age, Classical, Soft Rock. This lowers anxiety levels.

5) Recite the Serenity Prayer; pray to "Accept the things I cannot change, have the courage to change the things I can, and have the wisdom to know the difference".

6) Time Out! Turn off your TV, computer, cell-phone, and Blackberry for a few hours each day.

7) Practice a slow hobby--gardening, yoga, Pilate's, needlework, painting, writing, etc., with meditative qualities.

8) Take a scented bath--lavender produces alpha waves, which relax you.

9) Pet your cat or dog

10) Breathe with slow deep breaths, breathe in for a count of 5, hold for a count of 2, breathe out for a count of 5. This mimics your sleep breathing.

And!

"There is more to life than increasing its speed." --Mahatma Gandi

"Nothing excellent can be done without leisure."--Andre- Gide

"Take rest; a field that has rested gives a bountiful crop."--Ovid

"To be quite oneself one must first waste a little time."--Elizabeth Bowen


Here's a poem about relaxing from my book, Water Running Downhill! Enjoy!


THE ZONE

While sequestered as a willing tenant in
Your self-made prison of busyness
Dream of ways you can be free

To give yourself the gift of
A precious few moments, no distractions
Lock out your outer “life” and meditate

Find that it is almost a new experience, as
You may have forgotten the sensation
Of pure awareness, and nothing else

So used to being the “amazing balancing act”
You have found it hard to stop doing and planning
And just become still

Discover that one can see so much clearer
When traveling at
The speed of now


Peace out!

(: >) Joan

Resources:

Carl Honore, In Praise of Slowness: How a Worldwide Movement Is Challenging the Cult of Speed.

Reinhold Niebuhr, The Serenity Prayer.

Lori Erickson, "Not So Fast, How to Take it Easy In a Hurry-up, Stressed-out World", Family Circle, 11/29/05.

Norine Dworkin-McDaniel, "Love Your Life", Family Circle, 10/18/05.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Traveling at the Speed of Now


I am settling in after my latest out-of-town adventure. Fortunately, I have a three-day weekend, this week.

Friday was a catch-up day for my correspondence (at least most of it!), yesterday was house cleaning-yuck. Over the years, this has never become more endearing to my heart--go figure!

I showered and changed clothes after I was finished cleaning. Having nothing pressing to do, I decided to sit on the white wicker settee in the bay window of my living room. Sunshine was pouring in the window after a gloomy morning, and I leafed through a plant catalog where I had, some time ago, earmarked a few pages.

Low and behold, I caught myself dozing, then gave into the sensation. I cannot tell you when I have felt this calm and quiet--it has been a while. May be that second (tiny) cup of coffee has been the culprit in the last couple of months; my sleep schedule has been very disrupted. I have been careful not to have caffeine in the afternoon; I have been deluding myself about that quarter cup of coffee (really, that is all it is!).

Today's photo is of my friend, Renee from South Florida. She is a yoga instructor, and is the most enlightened person I have ever known. I always felt calmer in her presence.
I was planning to use Renee's photo in my book Water Running Downhill!, for the following poem. Unfortunately, every time I convert her photos to black and white I have issues. It is her lovely white hair. I have trouble with black and white photos when I am using a subject with black or white. Admittedly, this needs work.

Here is the poem!


THE ZONE

While sequestered as a willing tenant in
Your self-made prison of busyness
Dream of ways you can be free

To give yourself the gift of
A precious few moments, no distractions
Lock out your outer “life” and meditate

Find that it is almost a new experience, as
You may have forgotten the sensation
Of pure awareness, and nothing else

So used to being the “amazing balancing act”
You have found it hard to stop doing and planning
And just become still

Discover that one can see so much clearer
When traveling at
The speed of now