There’s something calm and peaceful about the ocean. It takes me back to more carefree days. The sand muffles external noise, the waves lull and soothe. Salty air, soft sand, mild breeze, perfectly positioned beach umbrella, and a beach blanket. That’s my kind of mini vacation! Cold beverage, fresh fruit. Heaven. You can take a mini mental vacation just thinking about it!
When I was little, mom and dad would load us in to the minivan and take us to the beach. Weather it was a hot day or not, we splashed through the waves and never wanted to leave. After all that activity, food never tasted so good! We could have been offered stale bread and been totally happy. Even the sand wedged into every crevice never bothered us much either. We were carefree and loving every minute of it.
Beach days are just as important to our health as adults as they were for us as kids. Finding that outlet for accumulated stress is another aspect of taking care of our well being.
The reason stress is so dangerous is because it can lead to disease. If we function at high stress levels for prolonged periods of time, elevated cortisol hormone levels begin to negatively impact our memory and ability to learn. Metabolism slows, we gain weight, blood pressure goes up, immune system is compromised. We even risk having high cholesterol and heart disease among many other serious problems.
When we’re pressed for time, running in panic mode, this hormone kicks in and gives us the boost we need to be alert and able to function at seemingly ‘superpower’ mode. The downside is, you can’t run in this mode forever. Eventually you burn out and crash. You need a reset, a recharge. Before disease becomes the symptom that motivates a change, do all you can to stop functioning on overload full time.
There are many ways to de-stress and they all involve doing something fun. Music, laughing, taking a nap, going on a walk, playing a sport, chatting with a friend, or just lounging at the beach like me. Easy medicine!
Why the beach?
- cheaper than retail therapy
- crowded places come with noise
- free sea air and Vitamin D!
- Absorb Magnesium if you swim or dip your feet in the water
- Therapeutic environment that calms all your senses
Are you stressed out on a daily? How do you unwind? How often do you do stuff you enjoy?