Do you make time for fun?

Well today Karen reminded me that time does not always have to be serious. We need time to do nothing, time for fun and time when we are not thinking about time. Relaxation is a very important part of life. Studies show that people who are more relaxed and less stressed live longer. Many of these studies also show people who are wealthier and more successful live longer.

The richer lived longer, and the richer they were, the longer they lived. But more importantly was the relative wealth or success that the rich were enjoying. In the United States, while rich states have twice the wealth as others, they don’t have better health overall. But within each state, the richest people seem to live longer than the poorest. In other words, relative economic rank is what matters in determining how long we live. (Dan Sewell Ward, 2003, The Library of Alexandria, http://www.halexandria.org/dward081.htm)

The rich live longer because it is less stressful to be successful than unsuccessful. How often do we see that someone has committed suicide because they “feel like a failure?” You do not often hear of people killing themselves when they have just succeeded at some difficult task. Stress has also been shown to lower white blood cell counts and lead to lower immunity and greater susceptibility to a wide range of illnesses. Chronic stress is a causative factor of diseases of the cardiovascular system, including hypertension, stroke and heart disease; a compromised immune system can lead to infections, allergies or even cancer; and gastrointestinal conditions such as ulcers and irritable bowel syndrome. (Health Topics, http://www.50plushealth.co.uk/index.cfm?articleid=428 ).

Relaxation can reduce stress by substituting play and fun for worries and pessimism. When we relax our body recharges and we develop renewed resources for coping with life. Each of us has only has a finite amount of coping energy. When we drop below a certain level, we experience increased stress and an increased inability to cope with the daily traumas of life. We need to recharge our psychic batteries or we will experience a meltdown.

So let’s make today a time for fun. What can you do for yourself that will be fun? No matter how busy you are today, try to find at least one thing that will be your treat for being so productive on all those other days. Do you regularly treat yourself to a day of fun? How often each day do you build some fun into your day? Do you think you are Superman or Superwoman? Do you want to live longer and happier? When will you start relaxing more?

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