You have 4 free member-only stories remaining for the month. Subscribe now for unlimited access

When Being Too Relaxed Causes Problems

Relaxing is sometimes challenging for me. Not because I prefer to stay busy, but because until recently, I didn’t understand how to do it.

Some of the questions that came out of my confusion looked like this:

  – Is relaxation only meant for rest and rejuvenation?

  – Does it mean to be easy going?

  – What is the balance between relaxing and not relaxing?

  – What does a non-relaxed person look like?

  – Are they outgoing? Tense? Busy?

  – If relaxation is so nice, why do I feel like crap when I try to do it?

I may have overthought most of this, but still I wondered.

My misunderstanding

I used to think that the more reserved I am, and the less I did was a measure of how relaxed I was.

Of course, knowing myself, I took it to an extreme. I’d go way overboard and relax my way into a cozy, slothful stupor.

Doing this obviously came with its fair share of problems, which only agitated the stress I was trying to heal.

Being too relaxed (in the way I understood it at the time) made me ultra lazy. I stopped tending to my life in favor of “relaxing” because life was stressful and I thought I needed to chill.

Where I thought I was helping myself, I instead aimed a gun right at my foot and fired away.

Looking back, I missed so many opportunities to learn and grow because of this shell I created to hide in.

This carried on for a while, and I became less and less engaged with life. Once again thinking I’m relaxing, I’m actually cutting myself off from the world. I stopped living and downgraded myself to only existing.

Trying to do anything in that state is debilitating. Everything is overwhelming and stressful which had me give up easily on things because… why bother.

I’m too relaxed to care

“Why bother” was my mantra back in these days. Because of my “deep relaxation”, I had lost my capacity to care about anything. So my behavior up to this point already wasn’t stellar, but when I stopped caring, things got dangerous for me.

I’d say or do what I wanted because I was so “relaxed” and if you had an issue with me, then that was your own problem to solve.

I don’t know how many people, including loved ones, that I hurt with this attitude of mine, but my guess is plenty.

So, along with neglecting the hearts of those around me, I was also careless with my own. I let feelings fester and thoughts take control. I’d let my mind drag me around the future and past mercilessly.

Around this point depression would turn its gaze toward me and waste no time hurrying over to give me its all too familiar suffocating hug, leaving me heavy and numb.

All of this from just trying to relax… yeah, I clearly messed this up.

Redefining relaxation

It was after repeating this painful cycle TOO many times that I dove in and redefined relaxation for myself by incorporating mindfulness practices and meditation.

It wasn’t long before my relaxation was bringing me closer to life instead of severing me from it. I also found the ability to respond and flow easier with whatever is happening.

If life pushes, I step back. If it pulls, I step forward and lean into it. Being relaxed now allows me to perform this kind of cosmic waltz with life - accepting things as they come and go, all the while responding healthily along the way.

Overall, I found that relaxation should ease stress and not add to it. I also found that it is more of an internal state than some kind of external display of calmness.

So, if you are like me and ever feel your relaxation pulling you out of the present moment and into your head. Then try adding a generous dose of mindfulness to your relaxation and watch it transform from something harmful to helpful.

Recommend0 Simily SnapsPublished in Non-Fiction, Self-Help, Spirituality