Relaxation is something our feline friends know a thing or two about. How often do you see a cat lounging around and looking stressed? Right, never. Here are five things your cat knows about relaxation that you can learn too.
Vitamin D is a daily necessity
Cats can always seem to find the warmest place in the house or yard. Like humans, cats use the sun as a source of Vitamin D otherwise known as the sunshine vitamin. This vitamin has been attributed with strengthening bones and teeth, as well as increasing resistance against some diseases. With sedentary lifestyles and lack of time reaching epidemic proportions, finding the time to indulge in a little bit of sunshine could not only make you feel happier and more relaxed, but improve your health as well.
Nothing beats a good stretch
Ever watched a cat stretch? They seem to be able to bend and twist in ways that would make a hard core yogi green with envy. There are some obvious benefits of stretching, such as increasing flexibility and range of movement, but it’s also a great way to release the tension in your body that builds up as a result of stress. You don’t need to spend money or take up pilates or yoga to enjoy the benefits of stretching. Just find a comfortable place on the floor and start on the areas that feel the tightest first and make a little time each day for this relaxation.
Find somewhere to hide
Empty boxes, open suitcases, hidey holes in your wardrobe and even on top of book shelves are just a few of the places cats love to retreat to. Sometimes we all need to escape the world. Solitude can help to clear your mind and allow you to refocus your attention to where you want it to go. Now I’m not suggesting you go hide in your closet or an old box, this may freak out those closest to you. Just suggesting that you try scheduling a little time each day, or at least once a week, to disconnect from the world and go within. Meditation is a practice that can provide the peace of stillness, but if that’s not for you, just try chilling out with a book or writing in your journal. Wine or a cup of tea optional.
Alone time is energizing
Cats don’t waste time hanging around people they don’t like, and even when they do like you they will happily wander away once they have had enough. Dealing with people can sometimes be stressful and draining. If you have toxic people in your life that you can eliminate, do it. If you have people in your life that you can only handle in small doses, take steps to minimise the time you spend with them. Make more time with those that energize you and are positive relationships. But, just be mindful that too much of a good thing can make it seem less rosy so remember to give your friends space as well when they need it.
A Little Human touch
While lying back and having your belly stroked may not be your idea of relaxation, affection and touch can make you feel good. Don’t rule this one out because you think it means getting romantic or sensual. A big hug from a girlfriend, a long overdue full body massage or even a pedicure can do the trick. Just like a cat, sometimes just a tiny bit of attention is enough to fuel you for the day.
Cats keep it simple. There is a lesson in that for everyone.
It is way too easy to put off relaxation and allow the needs of everyone else around you to come first. Long term this is one of the worst things you can do for your body, mind and spirit. Make time at least once a week to do something self indulgent and learn how to master relaxation like a cat.