If you find it hard to relax, you’re not alone – relaxation doesn’t come naturally to everyone. It’s a learned ability to shift into the parasympathetic state, the relaxation response, which requires practice and guidance. Today I’m sharing five challenges associated with relaxing and how to overcome them. So, take a moment to pause, breathe, and join me on this journey to deeper rest.
One major obstacle to relaxation is guilt. Society often portrays rest as a luxury or a reward for hard work, rather than a fundamental human need. I talk about how we’re conditioned to associate rest with laziness or weakness, but in reality, rest is essential for our physical and mental well-being.
Another relaxation blocker is that stress hormones can become addictive, offering us a temporary rush of energy. This addiction keeps us trapped in fight or flight mode, making relaxation seem foreign and uncomfortable. I also share how suppressed emotions can be a significant barrier to relaxation. Many of us weren’t taught healthy ways to express negative feelings and these bottled-up emotions cause stress and anxiety.
I also dive into self-worth and how when we build our identity on our job performance and life roles, relaxation can feel uncomfortable. In a society that glorifies productivity, slowing down and resting can feel counterintuitive. However, we need to understand that having a regulated nervous system is key to us performing at our best.
In this episode, I share some of the benefits of yoga in teaching our bodies how to relax. A regular yoga practice helps to connect us with our core essence beyond external roles, discharge nervous energy, release muscle tension and calm the nervous system. In yoga, we also use specific breathwork and mindfulness techniques to down-regulate the nervous system and keep our minds focused on the present moment. There are so many benefits.
Relaxation isn’t a luxury, it’s a necessity for our overall well-being. By practising yoga regularly and prioritising relaxation, we can unlock our potential, improve our mental and physical health, and reconnect with our true selves. So, if you’ve been struggling to relax, I hope this episode encourages you to join the relaxation rebels and experience the transformative power of relaxation. Your future self will thank you.