Judge Lawrence Huerta: Enriching Our Lives
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Enriquezca Su Vida
(Enriching Your Life)

A self-published book by Judge Lawrence Huerta
©1968.

translation by Anthony Nuño, 1999.

CHAPTER XI:
"THE FERTILITY OF RELAXATION"

"Man's best ally in his search for success is good health; without it one can't keep abreast. Good health depends on good sleeping habits. Whoever plans to be successful must arrange his life in a way that includes complete relaxation and good sleeping habits.

The first step is to live a healthy life during the day which includes: keeping yourself calm, chew your food throughly, exercise your muscles daily, be optimistic, control your anger, fear and worry, play moderately, be even tempered in all things and laugh frequently."

-- GRENVILLE KLEISER

Have you noticed those lucky people who in despite of their noisy, uncomfortable and confusing surroundings, recline and rapidly fall asleep for a few minutes? This is an art in itself. There is great difference between the capacity to relax and the simple fact of falling in a state of lethargy. I don't believe any man was born with the capacity to relax and fall asleep; then, it is obvious this capacity must be acquired. Next, I will elaborate on the need for mental hygiene necessary for mental and physical relaxation since you can not have one without the other. If we have an organized life, we will provide our bodies with plenty of rest, because rest and relaxation are vital for the conservation of the body. There are those who do not know this art at all. True relaxation will be accomplished only after you learn to acquire mental peace. Anxiety is the cause of nervous stress, and once you learn to expel these demons, you will be in charge.

Many people do not provide the body with sufficient sleeping time. In the long run the lack of sleep will bring deterioration to your psychological being. We must learn to organize our time in a schedule which includes sufficient sleep and active time. It is dangerously easy to fall into the habit of staying awake a little longer every night. The body does not protest. Instead, the body simply adapts to the shorter sleeping patterns. However, over a long period of time, the effects will reveal as sickness and physical deterioration, redness of the eyes, dark circles under the eyes, wrinkled and tired skin. I have listened to a lot of people who brag about the few hours of sleep they require, but with time these people will show signs of premature aging, and they will not need to brag this time. Because of our physical constitution we spend a third of our lives in bed, our bodies need the rest for the preservation of their strength and vigor.

There are some individuals who never suffer from insomnia. Unfortunately, I do not belong to this group even in instances when I used to go to bed completely exhausted. The problem was that I could not get rid of the worries related to business deals which occurred during the day. Believe me, that as one frantically tries to fall asleep,the nervous tension creates a state of anxiety. After an arduous search for a solution to this problem, I came across a book titled: "A Natural Way to a Healthy Sleep" written by Charles Kelly. If you have the same problem, I recommend this book to you. I found Kelly's suggestions practical and effective. The thesis of the book is based on the control of breathing rhythms.

This theory of the vitality of breathing rhythms sprang out from Yogi Philosophy and it was not until scientists from the west showed interest in it that people became interested in this philosophy. This theory has been scrutinized and discussed by those who support or oppose it, but medical authorities have accepted its contribution to science which involves the application of breathing techniques and its benefits on the body. For a long time, professional singers and speakers have been aware of the need to control breathing techniques. If people knew how important good posture is for good breathing habits, they would straighten up and become aware of its importance for the well being of the body.

Kelly suggests in his book that a simple technique for falling asleep involves the practice of inhaling and exhaling deeply, repeat this activity three times and then hold your breath. It is incredible how one slowly falls asleep and how effective this method is.

Only those innocent people let themselves be seduced by numerous sleeping pill ads. When one allows the body to depend on all kinds of pills, it is as senseless as to depend on crutches instead of your own legs. After some time, you will find that your legs won't be able to support your body weight without the aid of the crutches. The same thing happens when the body, in order to function properly, becomes dependent on pills. This is not only an expensive and foolish practice, but with time, a neurotic condition will develop.

Find out how much rest your body needs and what kind of relaxation is best suited for you. The machinery can't work incessantly without rest. I am convinced that our ancestors had the best solution regarding rest and relaxation. When I visited Mexico, Puerto Rico and Cuba, I soon learned that one must forget business issues at least two hours after lunch. In the mentioned countries all commercial activities, offices and shops close at noon and everybody goes home and takes a siesta. I observed that even big truck drivers park away from the road and take a siesta. I assure you that by taking a siesta these drivers become better and safer drivers. Nobody can deny the tremendous value of rest and relaxation, and the practice of these activities will make you more efficient in life.

HOW DO YOU SPEND YOUR FREE TIME?

As part of a hobby and in order to relieve stress levels, do you carry out physical activities, do repairs around the house or do some gardening?

DO YOU GET ENOUGH SLEEP?

Do you know how to forget about your problems when it is time to rest?

ARE YOU EXPERIENCING INSOMNIA?

Are you looking for a healthy and natural cure for this ailment? Have you tried to inform yourself about the breathing techniques as a possible solution?

CHAPTER XII