I often am reminded of Benjamin Franklin’s wise words, “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.” We understand the need to plan what we do with our finances, our vacations, and what we will do for the holidays, but if we do not make a plan or routine for our relaxation then we most likely will not do it.

Most of us would like to put relaxation and stress relieving techniques at the top of our list, instead of thinking we’ll just do it when we get around to it, but like everything it needs to be purposeful. How then do we make relaxation a routine? 

I purposely take five to 10 minutes before I get out of bed to do a stress assessment. My day is then more productive and I can handle more. In that five to 10 minutes, I look first at my physical body. Where does my pain lie? How is my breathing?

I take a minute or two to stretch my body or bring intent to an area that is inhibiting me.

I then review my thoughts and spiritual side. What is requiring more energy? Is something worrying me and how can I resolve this? Who might be able to assist me? 

I then spend a few moments in gratitude to shift my thoughts more positively. I end with an intention or prayer for my day.

After the morning rush is over, I take a little time for deep breathing. The way my schedule is, I have to set a reminder in my phone for five minutes of intentional breathing. Sometime if I have time I’ll listen to a meditation or music to clear my mind.

I am a Reiki master and I send myself positive energy through Reiki as well. I might also search my heart for individuals I need to forgive or those who lay heavy on my mind because of their own struggles. I send a prayer or positive intention to those people.

Towards the end of the day, I’m exhausted and know my family deserves my best. I use the drive home to clear my thoughts. I sometimes sing along to a song that speaks to me.

But if it’s a frustrating day, I might just scream or express my disappointment. Being true to yourself wherever you are at the moment is important and will resolve issues faster than ignoring them.

Relaxation does not have to take up a large chunk of your day, but by setting reminders and making purposeful habits, you will create a relaxation routine that intertwines with your life and circumstances.

Holly Wright of Bluffton is a Reiki Master, reflexologist, NASM certified personal fitness trainer, and co-owner of Trinity TheraSpa in Moss Creek Village. trinitytheraspa.com