5 Relaxation Tips to Transform Your Life

Relaxation is a major component of staying fit, but it’s more than just doing nothing, and it’s anything but a waste of time.

At The Good Life Massage our mission for our clients is wellness. When most people hear that word, they might think of eating vegetables, exercising, drinking lots of water, etc. Those things are all great, but relaxation is one often-overlooked habit in planning for wellness. Real relaxation requires full attention, uninterrupted time, and maybe even some gentle discomfort.

Relaxation is as crucial to your body’s functioning as the strain of a good workout. Your body needs to work to both extremes in order to maintain a full range of functionality throughout your life. In other words, your body needs to move, yes. But it also needs to be able to be still and truly at rest.

Relaxation vs. Fun
In our language we tend to conflate relaxation with fun. Relaxation can and should be fun to some extent, but not all things that are fun should be considered true relaxation.

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Roller coasters, to many people, are great fun! They’re also very stressful, and are not generally relaxing.

TV shows, movies, Internet: fun! But are they truly relaxing? They involve sitting still, but they also usually involve your mind going elsewhere. These things are designed to inflict some stress on you, to make your mind race, to put you on the edge of your seat, even make you cry. Not only can these activities eat large amounts of valuable time, they can compromise your mind/body connection.

True relaxation is a rest for the mind as well as the body. It increases and improves your mind/body connection. When was the last time you sat quietly enough that you could hear your own breath, or even your own heartbeat?

A rested mind is creative, patient, agile, responsive, and alert. A rested body can adapt to stress more readily and can relax more quickly once stress has come and gone.

This is what makes relaxation a component of wellness. When you’re well, you can handle daily stresses, including the part where the stressors have passed.

Relaxation can also improve sleep patterns. When your body becomes good at slowing down, it succumbs to sleep more readily when it’s time to hit the pillow.

Truly Relaxing Activities
Relaxation doesn’t have to take long. Just fifteen minutes a day can make a huge difference in your state of mind and sense of well-being. Below are some truly relaxing activities you can start today. Turn off your phone, give one of these a try, and see what happens!

Go for a Slow Walk (and leave the headphones at home!)

Try to pick as natural an environment as possible, but one which will be safe and easy to walk through, preferably a hiking trail, public garden, or a park. While you’re out, breathe deeply. Listen to the small sounds your body makes. Notice the sights and sounds of the world around you. Let the cares of the day drift away and try to stay focused in the present moment.

Places like Coulon Park here in Renton offer a relaxing lake view, a picturesque arboretum, and smooth walking trails.
Places like Coulon Park here in Renton offer a relaxing lake view, a picturesque arboretum, and smooth walking trails.

Massage

This one is self-serving, we admit, but it meets all the criteria above and then some. We use music of your choice, or none at all, and give you the option of adding aromatherapy and other soothing enhancements. A 60 or 90 minute massage can re-invigorate the senses, improve circulation, and help you build a stronger mind/body connection.

Progressive Muscle Relaxation

YouTube abounds with audio meditations along these lines. This isn’t the mystical miracle hypnosis of the audio cassette era. This is a guided exercise usually performed lying down or from a sitting position that increases mind/body connection by systematically helping you relax the major muscles of your body. You’ll be taken through a series of movements involving flexing and relaxing your muscles while breathing deeply. This can reduce anxiety, relieve insomnia, and increase focus when practiced regularly. This usually takes anywhere between fifteen minutes and a half hour.

Sit in Silence

You don’t have to pray, meditate, or listen to new age music. Just stop! Listen to your own breathing.

Notice your thoughts as they enter and exit your mind, but try not to give them too much focus.

This is easy, can take as little as a minute or two, and can help you slow down your day’s frantic pace

Take Your Breaks at Work!

Washington State Law requires that you get two paid breaks in a full work day, so use them. If you set that boundary with your boss and co-workers, they’ll generally respect it. Make good use of that legally mandated time by doing some of the things above, even if it’s just a brief moment of silence. Studies have shown that the people who take regular breaks are not only happier at their jobs, but are more productive.

Trying some of the above exercises can help you re-think what it means to really relax and help you develop a whole new relationship with the stress in your life.

As with everything on this blog, none of this information should be construed as medical advice or care. The employees of The Good Life Massage, including the writers of this blog, are not medical doctors. Consult with your physician before making any changes to improve your health.

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New Location, New Blog

The Good Life Massage is pleased to make two major announcements! A couple weeks ago we broke in our new clinic, giving the first massage in our new home at 200 S Tobin, Suite A on the north side of downtown Renton.

In the three years since Good Life Massage has been in business, we have grown far faster than any of us ever anticipated. With the help of promotional megaphones like Yelp, SpaFinder, Amazon Local, not to mention our fantastic clients, we have been able to make our little one-room clinic all that it can be. Business has been so good, in fact, that it’s gotten difficult for clients to find openings. The time for change is now!

Our new location will be a full service multi-room massage clinic that includes …

  • four treatment rooms (including a dedicated couples room!)
  • spacious waiting room
  • full-time reception desk
  • total wheelchair access to the building and to every room
  • on-site laundry room
  • full break room for our employees
  • more convenient parking
  • and even more to come! Watch for announcements down the line.

Obviously, we’re excited about this. But what’s in it for you?

First, our schedule is about to break wide open, bursting with availability. Going from one treatment room to four means we have just quadrupled our capacity. We’re doing all we can to hire new therapists to fill all this new space. We’ll announce that as they come aboard, so stay tuned.

Second, our clinic is more user-friendly than ever. The new place is easier to find, easier to park at, and practically stands alone. While we share the building with other suites, we’re highly visible from the street, and have our own parking lot.

What ISN’T Changing?
We’re still committed to exceptional, individualized service, as always. No matter how busy our clinic gets, we still pad our sessions with thirty minutes between sessions, leaving plenty of time for clients to relax, settle in beforehand, and slowly warm up afterwards. In other words, you’ll never see revolving door full of hustled clients at GLM.

Picture

As you can see, the decor feels very familiar. We’ve worked hard for weeks to ensure that every client feels at home here.

How do I get there?
From I-405 …
Take Exit 5. Go west on Park Ave North and go through the light at the Boeing plant where it becomes Logan Avenue. Stay on Logan as it curves south. Keep going past Renton Stadium and stay in the left lane to go straight rather than curve right onto Airport Way. Go through the light at Airport Way, go one more block, and turn right on South Tobin. We’re just past the Salvation Army church on the right.

From 167 …
Follow 167 north until it becomes Rainier Ave. Go about a mile up Rainier Avenue South, turn right on Tobin, and you’re here.

Stay Tuned
The second announcement is more obvious: we have a blog! Yes, the blog you’re reading right now is brand new as of this posting. This will be the most detailed source of information on all our services, products, promotions, and announcements for The Good Life Massage.

And make no mistake, there are some big announcements coming.

To stay up to date, click one of the social media links below or just keep checking back here at the website.