According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the productivity of the American workforce was up by 6.9% annual rate during the 4th Q of 2009. While I am definitely not an economist or any kind of labor guru, I would probably venture to guess that those who are working are doing more with less and/or working their butts off to keep their jobs.
We are proud to say we squeezed 15 hours of work into 8, have the ability to prepare, cook and eat a meal in under thirty minutes and are on the verge of apoplexy when someone can't get to the point in 5 words or less.
So, today I'm going to share with you some of my favorite ways of chillaxin. All of my favorites are either free or under $10.
Visit the local library
It probably won't come to anyone's surprise that libraries reported an increase in traffic over the past few years. The recent economic times have challenged most of us to find creative ways to save money, yet not feel deprived. So if you are looking for the latest hot title, movie, music or video game, look no further than your municipal library. There books, DVD's, CD's, Games and social events for are all available for free. Personally, just walking into the doors puts me in a state of calm. If I'll looking for a good read I my library offers suggestions via a print out of the NY Times Best Seller List and 1001 Books to Read Before You Die. If it's TV I'm interested in, the entire series of Helen Mirren in Prime Suspect is available. Upon getting home with my I change into my loungewear (aka pajamas), make myself a big mug of tea, grab some cookies and settle in for a few hours of relaxing bliss. For those of you who have kids, most libraries have an extensive children's section. What better way for the next generation to develop a lifelong appreciation for one of our country's greatest assets.
Take a Walk
In this case it isn't a power walk, more like an amiable stroll. With spring officially here, there are so many changes happening. Already the crocuses and daffodils are adding some color and soon the trees will be starting to blossom. I'm lucky enough that Forest Park, one of the nation's premiere urban parks, is close by. I'll leash up McEnore and we'll meander through the park and people watch. will A long walk is both soothing and refreshing at the same time.
Give yourself a facial
Blocked pores, dark circles, general discoloration and crows feet are all physical evidence of stress and burning the candles on both ends. While a day at the spa would be lovely, instead I slather on some Queen Helene Mint Julep Masque (about $4 at Walgreens) and relax for 15 minutes while it works its magic on shrinking pores, keeping blackheads at bay and making me feel better in general.
CBS Sunday Morning
The venerable news magazine originally aired in 1979 and brings interesting stories on quirky American characters both famous and not. As I write this, I'm watching a segment on the Muazak company. The previous story was about a retired biology teacher who has an extensive tulip garden in Southern California, apparently quite a feat since the flower of spring is difficult to grow in the hot, dry climate. The last few minutes are the best of all since the show always ends with some very relaxing scenes from nature. So if you're too awake to sleep in, but not quite awake to get moving, grab a cup of coffee and tune in.
I hope this suggestions inspire your own favorite ways to relax and tune out.