[caption id=“attachment_457” align=“aligncenter” width=“780”]how do you relax? Am I doing this right?[/caption]

Here’s something I struggle with: I don’t really know how to relax.

By “relax,” I mean “engage in leisure activities” (such as the following):

  • watching TV
  • aimlessly surfing the internet
  • reading purely for pleasure
  • watching most sporting events
  • sitting and doing nothing

I’d just rather be doing something. To keep it simple: accomplishing things makes me feel good, and not accomplishing things makes me feel bad.

I’ve tried relaxing, and it’s not like I hate it. I enjoy the leisure activity half-heartedly while I’m doing it, but when I’m done, I regret the spent time (especially if the activity was mindless).

When I have downtime, I prefer easy but productive tasks. Roasting coffee, exercising, playing the piano: to me, these are worthwhile and therefore enjoyable. But killing an hour watching TV? I don’t dig it.

An important distinction: If I’m spending quality time with friends or family, that’s strengthening interpersonal bonds with people I love. If I’m watching a truly great movie, that’s exposing myself to art. In other words, if I can assign meaning to the relaxation, it counts as okay.

I’m not humble-bragging here, as I’m really not sure that avoiding relaxation is healthy. It’s just something I’m curious about right now.

Do you relax? If so, how?