"There is a huge difference between active relaxation and passive relaxation. Active relaxation refreshes and restores the mind. It keeps it flexible and toned for thinking. Great thinkers have known this secret for a long time. Winston Churchill used to paint to relax. Albert Einstein played the violin. They could relax one part of the brain while stimulating another. When they returned to workaday pursuits they were fresher and sharper than ever." - Steve Chandler, Author When I was in college I was an art minor...and I loved it. I often wished that I had majored in Art and minored in Business instead...but now am thankful it was the other way around (I was rather humbled in my ability when I saw the work of those majoring in art). I used to spend hours and hours in the graphics lab after classes working on projects. One of my good friends and I would find ourselves in the lab until the early hours of the morning and it never felt like studying...it was so relaxing! He was much better at it than I was and many times I would find myself neglecting my own project just to watch what he was doing. I was captivated. My favorite times were spent watching him do his painting, though. Art is a great source of relaxation. Anyway...since I got out of school the only thing I kept up with was photography. I bought the equipment and chemicals and set up my own darkroom, but over time got away from it. It has been over a year since I have been in there and I really regret that. Of course there is no way for me to set one up in my apartment, but hopefully one day I'll be able to get it back up and running. Drawing was also a good source of relaxation and I haven't done any in a long time. This weekend I spent some time at my mother's and went through my things and got all my pencils and easel and some other things and I plan on getting back into it now that I have a bit more time. When I was little I used to look at pictures in books and copy them...I still can't draw from my imagination. I have to have something in front of me to look at. When I quit drawing I was doing portraits...looking at pictures of family or friends or people in magazines and recreating what I saw. This was the hardest for me, but something I really enjoyed. Now that I have everything here with me I am anxious to get back at it. And today is the day that it is going to happen. I called in sick b/c all my symptoms from last week resurfaced (not that they actually all disappeared, but today I just had enough and called in) plus the fact that it is raining and thundering is so calming...I think today is the perfect time to sit down and work on some drawings... So, what do you find that relaxes you so well?