Life is hectic and harried, but there are several ways you can jump off the hamster wheel of life to get some much needed respite. You only need to mentally commit to it and you can make it happen. It’s very difficult, especially in this part of the world (Africa) to get a break. It’s like every second is fully packed with activities- and so is every minute, hour, day, month and year. At the end of the day, you are completely burnt out! Do you wish you could slow things down especially in your mind? I wish. I did some studies and came up with a few ideas. May I share it with you?
I am sure this sounds funny. You may laugh at this idea, but it isn’t called the rest room for nothing. For many of us, our day is a never ending stream of requests for our attention from others. When you find yourself hitting the wall, go take a bathroom break whether you need to go or not. Go into the stall and have a seat, close your eyes, take a deep breath (if it’s safe), and relax. Try putting your hands over your eyes and rubbing your temples. You’ll feel better even though this is a short break. Use the time to think about what you really need to do next instead of just reacting to every request.
Fix an appointment with yourself on a regular basis
I strongly recommend this especially for people who have to attend to several other people in the cause of the day. Fix a 30-60 minutes appointment with yourself on a regular basis (I recommend at least once weekly). Take this time to think about your dreams and what you need to do to make it reality. You could make use of any quiet place – store, library e.t.c
Change your perspective
Sometimes we can’t get our minds off our work, even when we come home from work. So how do you slow down your mind? Many turn to TV to help turn off our minds. But how about doing something totally different? You could: go to an art opening, do some volunteer work, visit a lecture at the local library, go see a live play or live music, or anything else that will help you forget about work for a while, but at the same time open your mind to other ideas instead of turning your brain off the way TV can.
Try a change of location
Another idea for freeing your mind is to go to a place you don’t usually visit. Or go to a place that you do go to frequently, but this time really takes notice of what’s going on around you. For example, a great place to go is simply out in nature - the woods, the beach, the mountains, and the park. As a child how did you feel when you were in these places? Can you notice those things again today as an adult? Go ahead and take some time to enjoy fond memories. Let them take you away from it all. Do the smells, sounds, and scenery of a place talk to you? What do they say? What do they motivate you to do differently going forward?
Take time to play!
Take some time to play some games, sing, or dance with your children or with friends or family. Make it a point to become really engaged. Tell yourself that all your worries and thoughts will still be there when you’re done playing. Commit to letting it all go while you do so. If it’s hard for you to do this, then schedule it with someone with whom you won’t be able to break the date. Have fun for a change. A good warm up is to play some music before to get your fun self moving and grooving and leave your work-a-holic self in the dust!
Get good sleep
At night, there are a couple things you can do to get off the treadmill of life. First be kind to yourself by going to sleep when you’re tired! Find a way to turn off the TV an hour or more before your target bed time. TV is a stimulant, even if you think it helps you fall asleep. Better yet, leave the TV off except for your favorite shows or educational TV. Don’t be afraid to be alone with yourself or alone with your spouse. When the TV is turned off you can begin to think, to unwind the day.
Say a “little” prayer
You will be amazed at what this can do for you. Commit your moments into God’s hand. When you are hard pressed on every side, take a time out to pray. It may not necessarily be long. You may not have time to pray for 10 minutes in your office but I am sure you can afford to do a minute prayer 10 times during the day. Committing your worries to God helps you unwind. It makes you more confident of your future
You deserve a break. So, take it