People scoff at the idea of entertainment. As if you should be dutifully slaving away at something they deem productive for the duration of your waking hours. This mentality even pervades businesses who consider the idea of taking a break to be blasphemous, heretical, and a clear sign you are not taking advantage of their mental health plan, you crazy loon.
What does the science say, though? Obvious to everyone, stress decreases your lifespan in more ways than we can count. Early death, premature aging, health complications, metabolic dampening are merely the tip of the iceberg of the impacts stress has on your health alone. One study demonstrated between 60-80% of doctor’s visits were either directly caused or worsened by stress.
On the business side of the issue, studies https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3160620 show stress reduces organizational and employees’ overall performance and increases the number of errors produced during work. Stress also results in more absenteeism related to the aforementioned sickness and results in an environment with high employee turnover and mental health issues.
Psychological studies demonstrate taking breaks, one of the best ways to alleviant stress, has an immense boon to workplace and personal performance. Breaks increase motivation, decrease errors and depression, while reducing fatigue. Another scientific work https://buffer.com/resources/science-taking-breaks-at-work/ demonstrates breaks improve focus, memory retention, and help us assess our life’s path and goals.
Scientifically speaking, which next to technical correctness is one of the best forms of being right, relaxation is essential for a healthy human being. Not merely on a personal level, but on a performance level. Neglecting relaxation is a detriment to one’s health and success in life.
There are many forms of entertainment to relax with. Exercise remains one of the most positive in terms of its impact on your body and mental health. A good 30-40 minute walk each day has been demonstrated to improve your mental focus, mental health, cardiovascular health, among several other benefits https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/walking-your-steps-to-health.
Reading and audio books broaden your horizons to new adventures or facts about the world. Books have been a favored pastime of people throughout history and from all walks of life. Famously Cowboys would always have a book on hand for the long cattle drives or days where you sit and watch the cattle laze about eating. During the United States’ foundation, most people could read at a college level by a young age, so works such as Common Sense were widely distributed among the people leading to the foundation of nation. Don’t underestimate the power of literature.
Then there are movies and television or better still, as the networks have experienced a consistent decline in quality, Streaming. Frankly, I love streaming old shows that no longer get shown on television anymore. It is delightful to catch up on old out of circulation cartoon shows that filled my childhood.
Video games are another enjoyable pastime. Phone games provide a quick escape and offer a plethora of options to kill time. Console and PC games offer an equally impressive lineup of options, from worlds to explore or even save to comfortable farms to manage. Honestly, when you look beyond the AAA market, the industry has never been better.
Then there is of course gambling. Gambling is one of humanity’s oldest institutions. Dating back to 3000 B.C.E, gambling has evolved and coexisted with society. Famously lotteries were used to help fund the Great Wall of China, build roads in Rome, to name a few positive historical impacts.
The gambling industry has always been on the forefront of technology. Unlike video games, the industry is heavily regulated worldwide and monitored by third-party organizations to ensure fairness and legal standards are met. Life-long video gamers will attest the growing inclusion of exploitative microtransaction mechanics in AAA gaming has become a shameful blight on the industry. One whose mechanics would net any casino, digital or otherwise, a nice boot on the neck from regulators and potentially be shut down after receiving numerous fines and possible prison time.
There are many options for online casinos, so many in fact it is wise to check out guides like: https://smartcasinoguide.com/ to discover which one’s to patronage. Many casinos offer signing bonuses, have a diverse selection of games and varieties, and offer different long-term rewards for your business. Of course, sometimes you just want to play some cards, roll the dice, or what have you without spending money, so having free games is a must-have feature for any online casino.
Naturally, if overused, any form of relaxation can become negatively habitual and pose a detriment to your life. Most people don’t care when you are binging twelve hours of television or spending an entire day engrossed in a book. Yet will call out gambling and gaming.
Setting aside the ridiculous double standard it is wise to monitor your time spent relaxing and consider if what you are doing is indeed the wisest use of your time. When you do have the time to relax, something everyone should find time to do, you have a wide option of activities at your disposal.