Rest and Relaxation: How to Take It Easy One Day a Week
Something funny happened when you reached adulthood. That hamster wheel you got on, it kept turning and turning, and it didn’t stop.
Car payments, utilities, mortgages, jobs – you get all that and more with maturity. And that’s nothing to say of babies. They make the wheel turn even faster.
None of this is bad, mind you. It’s merely life. We all live it in varied ways, but just like with exercise, any fitness buff will tell you that rest days are important. Your body and mind need time to recover.
Fortunately, in the game of life, we have one day to rest each week. For most of us, that comes on a Sunday, or possibly Saturday. Perhaps because of your work schedule, the off day comes on a weekday. However or whenever it comes, chances are for years you’ve been robbing yourself of a much needed day off. You’ve been using that day to play catch-up and make the rest of the week easier. We’ve all been there. Hey, I get it.
But here’s a suggestion: Don’t do that anymore.
I’m here to encourage you to reclaim that day and do nothing. Well, maybe not literally nothing. But at least do something that promotes rest, relaxation, and family time. A trip to the amusement park or baseball game may not necessarily be what you need. Sure, that promotes family time, but it also takes some planning and effort to pull it off.
What I’m suggesting is really taking it easy and putting the “lazy” back into “Sunday.” I’ve seen websites that suggest taking it easy once a month. That’s not enough. You should do it once a week, and here are a few ideas for encouragement.
Make it a board game day. Who needs electronics when you have the simple pleasure of a family board game? There’s nothing that creates family memories and laughs like playing Twister, Yahtzee, Operation, or Life while sharing a huge bowl of popcorn. You loved those games as a kid, and you’ll love them even more when playing with your kids. Don’t just watch them play from the background – play with them!
Cook together. In our house, we’ve had a long tradition of cooking the “Sunday-Never-Had-It-Meal.” We spend part of an afternoon preparing a meal we’ve never tried. It’s broadened our regular weekly go-to meals and brought an expansive world cuisine to our table. It has also trained our kids to serve others and cook for themselves. And it allowed us a chance to bond with them. But if meal prep isn’t your idea of fun and sounds like too much work, ordering take-out might offer more relaxation. There’s nothing wrong with that!
Go on a family walk. Don’t have a calculated aim to exercise, meet a distance goal, or have any destination in mind. Just walk, even if it’s merely around your own yard. The reward here is that if you’re not in the house, you won’t be tempted to do any chores.
Nap. You put on your shorts and t-shirt when you’re going for a run, so why not wear your PJs all day and get the family in the mood for relaxation. It’ll encourage the likelihood that everyone will get very sleepy and decide to nap come mid-afternoon. And who doesn’t like a cozy nap?
Read together. There’s plenty of satisfaction in watching mindless TV, but you could also mix things up and spend time reading to your kids. Even if they’re old enough to read, it’s comforting for them to have a parent read to them. And yes, it’s also fun to make character voices.
Look at photo albums. Sit together on your couch and crowd around looking at family memories. It’s fun to enjoy photos of when we were all younger, but it’s equally important to know where we’ve been. We can learn a lot from our past, and it helps to shape our kids’ future.
Being lazy shouldn’t have a bad rap. Encourage your family to do it once a week, and you’ll be glad you did.
How do you take it easy?