Relaxation sounds like a good idea, doesn't it? I believe in the benefits, but I have trouble making time for it. If only my urge to rest were as persistent as my sweet-tooth (I'm thinking about Ruth's cookies in the previous blog post!)....
When I do remember to take a break, meditation is helpful. I've found several pleasant relaxation aids on YouTube. Just enter *relaxation music* or *guided meditation* in the search field; there's something there for every taste. One of my favorite guided meditations encourages writers especially. You can find it on Mark David Gerson's website.
Recently I happened to hear about an activity that caught my attention -- it's called nature-sitting. Designed as a field trip for college biology students, it offers a personal encounter with nature. Nature-sitting requires a setting like a park or open space with minimal traffic or other distractions. Students find a comfortable spot and sit quietly for an hour observing nature. They're encouraged to sketch, take photos, and write poetry or prose to record their observations (but no iPods, please). Zoology students at Miami University shared their experiences in poems, drawings, and photos that whet my appetite for relaxation.
I have an appointment with myself at 10:00 AM on Saturday, September 11. I'm going to take a camp chair, my sketchbook and writing pad down to the Rio Grande Bosque and experience my first nature-sit. You're welcome to join me there, or you could set up a parallel nature-sit in your own neighborhood or time zone. We can compare notes later.