Guest Posts

When you don’t have the time to relax – that’s when it’s time to relax

You know, one of those days when the sun is shining and all of your friends are busy, so you decide to spend the day with yourself. But when you get to the crowded park, you realize your phone is dead and the book you were supposed to bring is still at home. Do you feel; panic or relief? strength or worried? secure or hopeless?
By: Therés Enström Photo: Sandra Svensson

In the moment we spend time with others, we can meet ourselves but we can easily forget the magic of meeting ourselves when we spend time alone. Think for a moment, how do you feel about yourself and what thoughts do you have about yourself?

What we think affects our emotions as well as our physiological responses and actions. Our brain sorts out impressions and information after a negative, positive or indifferent experience and when the brain believe that the information is negative and a threat it will automatically connect to our body’s defenses which make us ready to fight or run.[1]

We live in a world where we are supposed to be “perfect “, where we shall fight until we bleed, get back again and continue until we reach the “top”. Where demands are constantly increasing, and the time and humanity is reduced. Where the image of the “ideal self” chasing us to sleepless nights, retouched images on Instagram, hurried coffee breaks, more projects and more working hours.

You have just as much value as you had before you passed an exam or finished a project

We know that stress is dangerous in the long run, but despite this more and more people are burned out. Stress is linked to the reaction of struggle and flight, and the body, brain and psyche’s different reactions to pressure and challenges.[2] Stress and control belong together and when we struggle to maintain our control a certain situation, a stress reaction is created.[3] This could happen when you meet what you think are the obstacles in your life and you lose control.

The question is how you treat yourself when it occurs?

There’s no right and wrong in this. Fighting is good, want to become better at something is a good thing, but we must never forget that it’s okay to be enough, dare to love ourselves in all our shapes, colors, thoughts and patterns. Dare to be confident that you’re awesome just the way you are. You have just as much value as you had before you passed an exam or finished a project. It’s great that you want to get better, sweat, grow and learn, but remember that you are valuable no matter what you accomplish, or don’t accomplish. Your value will not change with the numbers of your medals. The important deal is to love yourself and be happy with all your choices and thoughts.

A wise person once said that if you feel you don’t have the time, that’s when you take a beak and say something nice to yourself. It’s by far my best advice to reduce stress. When I feel stressed out, I lie down, relax and say something nice to myself, sometimes I really have to force myself to do it. But I make sure I do it.

Next time you feel all stressed up – and do not have the time – that is when you should take a break!


Name: Therés Enström
Age: 28
Occupation: Lead singer in the rock band King Albatross and the band Juniper Stream and soon-to-be health counselor
Lives: Borlänge Sweden

Listen to King Albatross
Check out their Facebook page for tour updates.


Sources used:

[1] För att förnya arbetsmiljöarbetet. Näringsdepartementet DS 2001:28 (2001)
[2] För att förnya arbetsmiljöarbetet. Näringsdepartementet DS 2001:28 (2001)
[3] Theorell, T. (2012). Psykosocial miljö och stress. Lund: Studentlitteratur.

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