Finding Relaxation: Top Ten Ways to “Ahhh . . .”

Meditation at sunset on a beach

1. Breathe with intention. Learn breathing exercises and practice them daily. You will notice overall improvement in body function, clarity of mind and healthier looking skin. Your disposition will be more at ease.

2. Walk/Exercise Get moving for a minimum of 15–20 minutes and you will increase blood flow, circulation, stimulation and improve oxygen flow.

3. Hydrate Drink at least half your body weight in ounces of water, daily. Water helps the organs function and keeps things moving.

4. Tell your Truth Don’t hold things in. Find a pleasant way to say what is on your heart, on your mind. The Truth will set you free! Your body and muscles won’t hold onto the stress and will thank you for it.

5. Laugh Often! Don’t take yourself (or others) too seriously. Shake “it” off. Watch funny movies. Keep your belly laughing.

6. Games Play. Play. Play. Excite your mind with a good challenge. Either a mental game, a physical game or both.

7. Massage and other Spa Services A great escape that soothes, nourishes and improves overall wellness.

8. Mindful Meditation Turn off your phone, your computer, the voices in your head. Learn the art of being quiet—really quiet—for just 10 minutes a day. You’ll be amazed at the results.

9. A Good Read Disappear from reality for a break into a paper adventure. Be in the story. See it. Feel it. Savor it.

10. Rest Lay down and let it go. All of “it”. Feel it slip away as you breathe, exhale, release. It doesn’t matter how long you rest, just that you do. Ahhh . . .

There are many ways to find your personal “Ahhh . . .” factor. Another key component to enriching your life this way once you find your factor is consistency—making time and creating space for these special moments. There is a difference between establishing a routine and a establishing a ritual. Routines are fixed things that we do mostly without even thinking about it. Getting up, brushing teeth, making breakfast, checking the mail, etc. A ritual is more ceremonial. It is a dedicated moment or action that we honor, cherish. When you set aside time for little celebrations it has more meaning than when you go about your daily “routine.” It may be as simple as drinking hot tea in a cozy nook, or reading a passage from your favorite uplifting book, or closing your eyes and breathing deeply with intention, taking a hot bath with ambient candles to “set the mood,” a five-minute conversation with your mate or friend at the end of your day to share some positive moments, or a 10-second kiss when you greet your love. Rituals are the moments we look forward to giving to ourselves or sharing with another in joy and anticipation. We create these in order to have something to look forward to. It is easier to be consistent if we make it a ritual, something to regard.

One way to find your personal “Ahhh . . .” is to be open to new experiences. Just because something may not sound like your “thing,” try it anyway. In the end it may not be for you, but at the very least you will discover how to appreciate someone else’s idea of “Ahhh . . .” and can relate to others more fully, perhaps even profoundly.

Additionally, a factor to living an inspired, healthFULL life is learning to be fully present, right where you are. This can often be a challenge as people juggle many different roles and are continuously thinking of the next thing they have to do. Sadly, this prohibits them from being completely involved or committed in the moment; the moment passes, and so does the fullness of that experience. To quote John Lennon, “Life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans.” So, tune in to the plans that you have already made and notice, notice, notice. What is happening? Conversations? Laughter? Love? Someone’s first something? That will be enough to keep you right where you are. Breathe it in. Savor it. All of it. When you do, you will discover you just created an “Ahhh . . .” moment to remember!