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Your Healthy Family: Importance of 'National Relaxation Day'

Posted at 9:28 AM, Aug 15, 2023
and last updated 2023-08-15 09:34:09-04

NAPLES, Fla. — If you need an excuse to unwind, Tuesday is National Relaxation Day. It's a day focused on stress relief and self-care for a clearer, calmer mind. And the David Lawrence Centers for Behavioral Health in Naples said there are many reasons you need to dedicate time to relaxation.

Every year for the last 38 years, National Relaxation Day is on August 15.

"We think about our world today. It is so fast paced. We are always in that heightened state of stimulation, and go, go, go," Jessica Liria, the Prevention and Education Manager for the David Lawrence Centers, said.

So it's important to take in the present. Liria says relaxation is more than just sitting on the couch watching Netflix.

"Don't get me wrong, that's great if that's somebody's way of truly relaxing and coping. But we want to look for ways that are enhancing our wellness, and really enhancing an area that could use a little bit more support," Liria said.

She points to the 8 Dimensions of Wellness:

  • Emotional
  • Spiritual
  • Intellectual
  • Physical
  • Environmental
  • Financial
  • Occupational
  • Social

"If we're able to think of ways that we can enhance those sections of wellness, ways that we can play into that self-care, into ways of coping with our emotions, we can help all dimensions of wellness really thrive," she said.
She said everyone has their own way of relaxing and unwinding.

"The goal of self-care is what will bring me some joy, what will bring me a little bit of peace and calm and happiness," Liria said.

Whether it's sweating it out in the gym, listening to music, taking a long hot shower, or something else, National Relaxation Day is a time to dive into that realm of relaxation.

Liria said there are consequences to not taking time to relax.

"I talk about a balloon. And it's kind of a funny analogy, but if you think about your whole day, you're breathing a breath of air into a balloon. And every time you feel frustrated, irritated, angry, sad, scared, you're breathing those breaths into that balloon, and you're not letting any of that air out. And what happens is, over time, that balloon gets bigger, bigger and bigger, until boom, it pops," she said. "Taking those little moments throughout our days, letting that air out of that balloon keeps us from snapping, keeps us from popping, and really does help us to manage those emotions and keep them from becoming too elevated to where we're causing additional problems in our lives."

Liria adds that we need to find healthy ways to unwind; using drugs or alcohol can do even more harm.