The Importance of Relaxation for Body and Mind

Relaxed in the here and now – who can still do that nowadays? Phases of rest, time out from everyday life – for the vast majority of people relaxation-time comes far too short. And leisure-time often is considered by many a waste of time. What a blatant misunderstanding! Why are regular phases of relaxation so important for a good attitude towards life? And also for a good health? Find out more about the importance of relaxation in our everyday life, and how relaxation leads to more energy and “joie de vivre”.

Relaxing means releasing physical and psychological tensions. Only the release of muscle tension leads to the relaxation of the entire organism. Surely you have already observed competitive athletes who try to become very relaxed before their competition. They do concentration exercises, massage their muscles or use certain techniques to release as much tension as possible from their body. They want to be free in their body and mind and as relaxed as possible. Relaxation does not make you tired or sluggish – it is not a passive state!

Relaxation and Performance

On the contrary: relaxation is crucial to peak performance! Be it for physical, concentrative, creative or effective work, relaxation is a process that can be actively initiated. Relaxation does not necessarily occur automatically and, as already explained, is more than just a passive pause. Relaxing always means letting go of something. Be it mental or physical, because both are conditioned. Those who worry a lot, are anxious or dissatisfied are usually also muscularly tensed. Muscle tension is always associated with anxiety, stress or fear.

Similar to a stress reaction, many physical and biochemical processes take place during relaxation reactions. Muscular relaxation stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system. This part of the nervous system is responsible for regenerative processes such as blood pressure, sleep, heartbeat, respiration, etc. During relaxation, the pulse rate and blood pressure drop, the breathing becomes calmer and more regular, the organism needs less oxygen and the lactic acid level, a by-product of anxiety-induced muscle tension, drops rapidly.

The connection of Body, Mind & Soul

Important in these processes is the interplay between body and mind. Each physical relaxation has the consequence that also the soul becomes increasingly calmer and more relaxed. This is used in psychotherapy to improve the regulation of emotions, i.e. to improve the handling of feelings such as fear, anger or sadness. Relaxation is a special state that we can deliberately bring about. Just sitting still or watching TV is not enough to bring about these beneficial physiological changes. One needs a relaxation technique that interrupts the flow of everyday thoughts and generates positive body reactions.

Relaxation can be learned

It can and should be learned to correctly relax. It arises from the state of inner peace. Consequently, relaxation cannot be forced, but only felt and experienced. It does not arise incidentally or by chance. It is an active method that can be learned. With the help of this technique we can leave the world and its problems for a while and take a break. Therefore we should try to be in the here and now, so that we consciously and devotedly turn to this activity. This cannot happen if, for example, we do the dishes on the side or plan our day – in other words, if we are only half-hearted in our work.

The inner attitude is very important on the way to relaxation. However, especially at the beginning, external conditions should also be taken into account. Silence and fresh air as well as a calm and pleasant environment can be very helpful to get involved with relaxation techniques.

Relaxation Techniques

Nowadays , some relaxation techniques are important techniques to reduce physical and mental tension. There are many areas of application, be it stress management, emotional regulation, strengthening the cardiovascular system, pain management, improving our concentration and memory as well as strengthening self-confidence.

The online encyclopedia Wikipedia lists the following uses for Relaxation Techniques (amongst others): Anger management, Anxiety attacks, Cardiac health, Childbirth, Depression, General well-being, Headache, High blood pressure, Preparation for hypnosis, Immune system support, Insomnia, Pain management, Relaxation (psychology), Stress management, Addiction treatment, Nightmare disorder. Relaxation techniques are often used both preventively and in acute phases to improve the experience of rest, recovery, serenity and satisfaction.

Popular relaxation techniques include yoga, meditation, reiki or pilates, and these exercises are very effective in calming and relaxing the body and mind. But even simpler things like a walk in a forest or a prayer can be very meditative, and also help you to relax your body and your mind.

There are different essential oils and oils blends that can be used to support and to greatly enhance meditation and relaxation practices. Essential Oils are very effective in emotions and mood management, and this is called “Emotional Aromatherapy”. They help to relax and calm down naturally, be it on its own, or in conjunction with yoga, breathing techniques and other relaxation practices.

Some great essential oils that are very relaxing

Here you can find essential oils and blends that will very effectively help you to relax and calm down and battle negative emotions, while they are also be very energizing, uplifting, motivating and helping you to get the best out of your relaxation routine and exercises:

Serenity Restful Blend:

• Creates a perfect escape with its calming, renewing fragrance
• Promotes relaxation
• Diffuses into a subtle aroma, ideal for relaxation
• Lessens feelings of tension and calms emotions

Balance Grounding Blend:

• Promotes a whole-body sense of relaxation
• Helps ease anxious feelings
• Evokes feelings of tranquility and balance

Peace Reassuring Blend:

• Promotes feelings of peace, reassurance, and contentment
• Counteracts anxious and fearful emotions

InTune Focus Blend:

• Enhances and sustains a sense of focus
• Supports efforts of those who have difficulty paying attention and staying on task
• Practice-time blend

Maybe you feel a bit down, demotivated or otherwise emotionally impaired, and hence cannot focus on your exercises? The following oils will help you to overcome emotional blockades and to get energy and motivation, so you find inner relaxation that way and can joyfully focus on your practice:

Citrus Bliss Invigorating Blend:

• Cleanses and purifies the air
• Help reduce stress and uplifts mood
• Positively affects mood with energizing and refreshing properties

Cheer Uplifting Blend:

• Promotes feelings of optimism, cheerfulness, and happiness
• Counteracts negative emotions of feeling down, blue, or low
• Maintains feelings of clear airways and easy breathing
• Helps minimize the effects of seasonal threats
• Diffuse at bedtime to promote a restful night’s sleep

Passion Inspiring Blend:

• Ignites feelings of excitement, passion, and joy
• Counteracts negative feelings of boredom and disinterest

Elevation Joyful Blend:

• Elevates mood and increases vitality
• Energizing and refreshing aroma
• Promotes a revitalizing environment

 

When using yoga, reiki, meditation, pilates or other relaxation techniques on their own, many people will enjoy the great benefits and results they can achieve with them. However, the powerful scents of essential oils can greatly deepen and enhance the relaxation experience. They can help to overcome mental blockages and barriers that hold you off or distract you from your practise. They can motivate you, energize you and make the exercise routine truly joyful and relaxed.

 

Read more about Relaxation Techniques on Wikipedia

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