Want to Stay Healthy? Take a Break!

Did you know that many tribal and indigenous cultures take vacations 4 times a year? Well, maybe not the Disneyland vacations that you might be thinking about, but they do take time away from life at every change of season to celebrate, cleanse, renew, and refresh. In modern cultures, we don’t tend to take time out of life to refresh-we just get sick. Sick days become our excuse for taking a break. It seems like there’s a better way to do things …

If you’re ready to take a break from life to renew and rejuvenate, here are some simple ideas to get you started. You might consider taking a break from:

WORKOUTS: Working out is a great way to stay fit, but taking a break can sometimes help your body recuperate and regenerate. In fact, we often find that taking a short break (a day or two) four times a year from our yoga program actually helps us become more flexible.

THOUGHT: Thinking takes more energy than you might guess. Have you ever thought of taking a silent retreat? You don’t have to go anywhere. Just turn off the phones, TV, computer, tablets, and radio and experiment with living in a silent environment for a while. Practice inner silence as well as outer silence. If you live with other people, retreat to your room or ask them to leave the house for a period of 4 or 8 hours. Be alone with yourself for a few hours and feel the restfulness of it.

FOOD: A short juice fast of 2 to 4 days can really help your body cleanse and detox. Consider adding probiotic supplements of acidophilus, bifidus and digestive enzymes to speed up the detox process and support energy levels during the process.

WORK: The best way to take a retreat is to get away from work. Most people spend 1/3 of their lives at work and a large percentage take work home with them. If you’re planning a retreat from work, take a long weekend or at least 1 day off. Can’t get away? Try taking 2 hours out of your work day and doing something quiet and unusual, such as visiting a museum or art gallery.

No matter how you take your break, the key is to take in life in a different way. Whether you take in different foods, drink in new impressions, or just slow the pace of your thoughts, taking a break is both useful and restful. Taking a break at least 4 times a year will add years and quality to your life.

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