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Why Relaxation Matters

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More than once have we, as students, heard about the concept of relaxation. Be it through Yoga sessions during English class, PSHE, or outside of school, we’ve been introduced to it in the past. However, some of us just can’t come to terms with it. Relaxation is defined as “a pleasant activity that makes you become calm and less worried”, and many people practice it by either meditating, napping or going for walks, just to name a few. Still, there’s a problem a lot of us face, and that is that we can’t find a time to stop and calm down because of how busy we are. Whenever a deadline is coming, we choose to spend time working or studying, instead of taking a break. While it’s okay to get work done, over-exhausting ourselves may end up being harmful to us. Here are just a couple of reasons why it’s also okay for you to take some time for yourselves:

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  1. 1. It clears your head and helps you think clearer.

Have you ever found yourself stuck, unable to come up with ideas, uninspired, after having been working for a while? That’s because studying or working for long periods of time doesn’t necessarily help our ideas flow. Research has proved that the maximum time for sustained attention, meaning, the longest we can stay focused on one idea is 45 minutes. After that, we may struggle to stay still, stay engaged or come up with solutions to the problems we might be working on. Taking a break every 45 minute or so helps keep ideas coming, reduces exhaustion and keeps you active while working.

  1. It reduces stress

Relaxation helps reduce stress: taking some time to calm our senses and take a deep breath will help slow down our rate of breathing and relax our muscles. We understand that the deadline of that one essay is the stuff of nightmares. Indeed, in cases like this, we could all use our time to work and get it done in time. We can make it more manageable by giving our body a literal breath of fresh air.

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  1. It helps you sleep better

After a long busy day, there’s nothing more satisfying that taking time for ourselves. After school, especially, we might find it hard to sleep thanks to all the activity our body just underwent. Using relaxation techniques, like stretching or meditating, will help the blood and air flow and reduce fatigue. According to our friends at Harvard, it’ll also improve the quality of our sleep, and that brings even more benefits along, such as boosting our memory (useful during tests and exams!), avoid feeling sleepy during the daytime, reduce risks of weight gain and hypertension, make us feel less irritable and possibly combat cancer.  

  1. It’s better for your heart and can reduce the risk of suffering a stroke

The more stressed you are, the higher your blood pressure is (according to scientists.) Sudden rushes of adrenaline may be damaging to your heart. Additionally, in 2007, the University of Cambridge found that those who were better at handling stress had a 24% lower risk of suffering a stroke. While we’re still young, it’s never too late to worry about your health.

  1. Turn into your new favorite hobby

As said before, everyone has a different relaxation technique (yoga, meditation, jogging, exercising, reading, going out for a walk, and many more.) Perhaps, while finding a way to unwind, you’ll come across your new favorite activity!

Overall, it may seem tempting to ignore our mental health and postpone our well being until that project we’re working on is done with. However, your body functions better when it’s not tired or stressed. Even 5 minute breaks between tasks may help – the main goal is to keep your mind fresh, and your body healthy.

 

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