Instead of “doing” resolutions in the year 2013, I decided to choose a word to work on throughout the year. In fact, this is quite a phenomenon on the internet, check out this site – One Word, 365. My first thought was the word FOCUS, but after a few stressful days at work, I realized if I didn’t learn to RELAX – I wasn’t going to be able to do anything else.  Without relaxation, there is no productivity.


2013 WOTY

What does relax really mean? First of all, it is a verb, and mean to make or become less tense or anxious.  Or to rest and enjoy an activity to become less tired or anxious. Yes, without learning to relax, I am not going to be productive. I won’t feel rested and I won’t be open to new things. I will be STUCK with what is causing me stress – stressing me out! How am I going to do this?  I’m going to learn as I go. I have begun working through the book The Artist’s Way.  One of the most important things to do – and it is important to do it on a daily basis, is write “the morning pages”.  This is three pages in longhand upon getting up every morning. It isn’t easy! At least not for me – yet! But, it does empty your head out, empty your thoughts, you put them all on paper. I have done them before, but I’m starting 2013 committed to doing them!

One of the first things I did was made a sign to put in my studio, at my desk, and in my office.

Here is a list of things to do that I believe will help me relax.

  • Breathe deeply
  • Take a walk
  • Yoga
  • Stretch
  • Practice meditation
  • Journal
  • Stop feeling guilty
  • Spend time with a pet
  • Listen to music
  • Do something repetive – like brushing your hair
  • Take a bath
  • Read
  • Count your blessing
  • Smile
  • Laugh
  • Eat a banana – your potassium level is reduced during times of stress
  • Relax your jaw
  • Look at the clouds
  • Go barefoot
  • Organize

What do you do to relax?  I’d love some input!


14 thoughts on “ONE LITTLE WORD FOR 2013

  1. Sue Grilli

    This is probably not a subject I could help with, since relaxing is not one of my strong points! The only thing I could add is painting, when I paint I am actually relaxing.

  2. vickiemartin Post author

    that is part of that repetitive movement too – but I agree – I relaxes me, while exciting me too!

  3. Becky Stattelman

    Lots of entries and hard work evident on a site of a busy artist, Vickie! ‘Relax’ is definitely something that only you can impose upon yourself. I’m thinking of how my daughter bristles when she gets up tight and I say, “Relax”. The actions you have in mind should help. Love your site and especially your ‘dress’ artwork! Becky

  4. Suzanne McRae

    I love the idea of a list to go with your word for the year Vickie. To be able to relax, would be a dream come true for me. Not one that I can do with ease. Although this year, even though I didn’t choose a word to work with, I do know that slowing down is one of my main focus and taking the time to breathe and simply stop myself more often from doing anything should prove interesting.

  5. becky in burma

    Hi Vickie,
    I don’t usually have a problem doing relaxing ‘things,’ but then I tend to often think too much and still feel a bit wired (internally) while doing them. I love your list, though!! So great!

    I do some of the same things as you ; here are some others:
    1. taking a bath and reading at the same time really helps me usually. Especially with a great smelling bubble bath in there.

    2. Being alone (essential for me)

    3. Watching a movie

    4. Getting a pedicure

    5. Listening to music (just that. Headphones, laying in bed or on the sofa)

    6. Daydreaming

    7. Sitting outside, drinking a cup of tea or coffee

    8. Walking on the beach

    9. Going somewhere (art museum, a bookstore) that I love to go, but not putting time restraints on it so that I can spend as much time as I want there without worrying about my other responsibilities.

    10. A weekend away. Alone. I did this once a few months ago. It was one of the best things I have ever done for myself. Ever. It was amazing. I took tons of baths, read, watched movies, slept in. I got to do anything I wanted without being responsible for anyone else.

    hope these help!!

  6. Andrea Wedell

    Hi Vickie,
    Relax ! What a great word for the year.
    I have to get myself out of my HEAD in order to relax, and being a Virgo, a double virgo in fact, I’m up inside my head quite a lot.
    So I get out into nature when I can
    I also do acupuncture when I need some help
    I take herbal supplements
    I get massages
    I read wonderful novels
    And I found last year, that the one really great way to profoundly relax is to travel. It doesn’t need to be far, but it needs to be away from my every day environment.
    Good laughs with friends is another thing that works
    And swimming ! Anything in the water to calm my Yang energy 🙂
    I meditate on and off, but it doesn’t really help me relax for some reason. I should get back to it, but have replaced it with morning pages for time’s sake. Must make choices as too many attempts to help relax, actually creates more stress I realize !

  7. vickiemartin Post author

    all of your ideas are great – thank you! Yes – I love to read in the bathtub – and lately I’ve begun using a sleep bubble bath and lotion – it helps. I need to move more. Over the holidays – i read four books in four days, and when i realized I wasn’t doing anything else, I started stressing – so I have to regulate my reading. I think many creatives live in their head too much – and pair that with a job that has someone gotten so stressful, i was been feeling a little frozen. I put the relax sign in my office and in my studio – and look at it and take deep breaths when I can’t get away. The morning pages are helping empty my head too.
    thank you again!

  8. Janine Whitling

    Great word Vickie, we so often forget the importance of relaxing. I think for me its a combination of allowing stillness as well as incorporating fun things that naturally make your shoulders loosen up. Like a day at the beach, or a visit to an art gallery, or a breakfast out with friends. I’d love to do more of these things.

  9. Michelle Reynolds

    Hi Vickie, love your word relax and your list of ways you are going to relax. Have a great 2013 and thanks for joining in with the Word Hop.

  10. Dena Crownover

    Love the “one word” idea. I just can’t narrow it down to only one word though. I think 2013 is going to be a “big” year.

    I like your word “RELAX” – that really is important. Thanks for the inspiration and ideas. Time on the beach is my number one way to relax. But, since that’s not often possible, yoga is the next best thing!

    Blessings and peace,

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