Modern society teaches you to exhaust yourself for the sake of productivity. Moreover, it tells you that you must continue to work at any cost– whether the cost is your health, peace, or happiness. This is why burnout is becoming an epidemic, and it’s also why relaxation and calm are more important than ever, despite what you may have learned in school or from your parents. We’ve compiled a list of symbols that can help you to call more relaxation into your life. Simply looking at any of these symbols (or brining them to your mind) and meditating on their meaning can help you let go of stressful energy and get into the field of relaxation.
Any of these sacred symbols, along with a little self-care, can help you to prevent or overcome exhaustion. So let’s look at these symbols and explore the hidden message each one tries to convey.
Symbols for relaxation and rest
Flowers that symbolize relaxation
When it comes to aromatherapy, the scent of lavender is universally known to invoke calm and tranquility. In addition, lavender flowers are often added to relaxing teas, either to soothe anxiety or promote deep sleep. Aside from their medicinal uses, their light-purple tone is so pleasing to look at that even decorating your bedside table with lavender flowers will probably help you relax at the end of the day!
If you’ve ever bought loose-leaf relaxation tea, you’ll know that they almost always contain chamomile. Those bright yellow flowers that imbibe your favorite restorative tea have come to symbolize rest and calmness. Even if this type of tea doesn’t suit you, placing chamomile flowers on your kitchen table can help to relax you on sight, due to the plant’s healing vibration.
3. Jasmine flower
These dainty white flowers, whose plant is used to make a world-renowned tea, represent a precise kind of relaxation. Jasmine flowers represent warm love and sensitivity, and they also symbolize the divine, which itself carries qualities of utmost love and generosity. Thus, the jasmine flower (in the form of its tea, oil, or even as decoration) can help to soothe you when your heart aches.
4. Anemone flower
The Anemone flower closes up in the night which symbolizes relaxation and opens back up in the morning. The flower symbolizes the importance of relaxation and that in order to reach your true potential, you need to master the art of relaxation.
Objects that symbolize relaxation
5. Wind chimes
Similar to Tibetan singing bowls, which we’ll describe later, the tinkling of a wind chime emits healing sound frequencies which raise your vibration and soothe your mind. In fact, this is exactly why wind chimes were invented! They originated millennia ago, in China, and they were originally said to repel bad spirits and attract good ones.
6. Singing Bowl
Singing bowls emit varying ranges of healing sound vibrations. If you’ve ever heard one played in a temple or yoga studio, you know the sensation that seems to defy explanation; the singing bowls’ music seems to reverberate through your cells, leaving you feeling joyful, inspired, and deeply relaxed.
Incense symbolize spirituality, relaxation and letting go. Both the sight and smell of burning incense is relaxation. The sweet smell of incense is known to relax the mind, enhance mood and turn on your creative brain or the right brain.
Imagine a dim, comfortable, candlelit room. That soft light is the picture of relaxation– probably because it’s the exact opposite of the bright, artificial light we’re exposed to in stressful office buildings and other work settings. A candle’s gentle flicker invites us to soften our gaze, breathe deeply, and calm down. And hence a candle is a symbol of relaxation.
Have you ever visited a beach, or perhaps a riverside, and seen hammocks strung up between trees everywhere with folks contentedly reading books or napping within them? If you’re like me, you probably felt instantly relaxed, especially if you decided to tie up your own hammock. The rocking of a hammock actually helps lower blood pressure, which is why hammocks feel so soothing.
Balloons symbolize letting go, release, relaxation, joy, freedom and independence.
Crystals that symbolize relaxation
11. Green jade
Green jade can help realign your heart chakra and bring more relaxation into your life. If you suffer from compassion fatigue, for example, try meditating with green jade, or carrying it with you.
12. Smoky Quartz
Smoky quartz is a powerful grounding crystal, clearing and healing the root chakra. When you’re trying to relax, grounding your nervous system should be your top priority; an ungrounded mind is racing and nervous, while a grounded mind feels calm and safe. Meditate with smoky quartz to feel more grounded, or place a smoky quartz in your bath to help soothe your anxious thoughts.
13. Blue Tourmaline
A fairly rare crystal, blue tourmaline reminds one of the deepest, stillest ocean water. Working with blue tourmaline can invite such tranquility into your daily life; it can also invoke more of the divine feminine into your energy. This crystal is for you if you have trouble slowing down or resting!
One of the most well-known crystals, amethyst works fantastically as a meditation stone. It clears your crown chakra, which removes racing thoughts and prepares your mind for peace. Thus, using amethyst can help you to have a clear, insightful, and most of all, relaxing meditation!
Yoga poses that symbolize relaxation
15. Child’s pose
In any type of yoga, child’s pose is the number-one resting pose for in-between asanas (or poses). It signifies surrender, signals the mind to take a quick break, and it also improves circulation, which can begin to combat burnout and exhaustion.
16. Savasana (Corpse Pose)
At the end of every yoga class, you lie in Savasana, or corpse pose, to signal your body and brain to rest. Lying down tells your nervous system– and the people around you!– “I’m taking a break. Be back in a bit.” So, of course, it goes without saying that this posture is a universal symbol of rest.
Chakras that symbolize relaxation
17. Root Chakra
In addition to the heart chakra, as described above, healing the root chakra can also aid in your quest for peace. An unbalanced root chakra creates feelings of instability and unsafety; on the contrary, a healthy root chakra allows you to feel stable and safe. It goes without saying, then, that it’ll be difficult to relax if your root chakra is out of balance.
18. Heart Chakra
These days, and especially if you’re an empath or highly sensitive person, you might find that you’re expecting yourself to provide too much care to other people, at the cost of your own mental health. In this case, your heart chakra may need some balancing. A balanced heart chakra helps us to give, to love our neighbors, and to know when to say no and care for ourselves.
Places that symbolize relaxation
No matter what stressful situation is occurring anywhere in the world, the waves on all of the world’s beaches are always ebbing and flowing. That soothing rhythm that continues on, day and night, can induce the most peaceful relaxation, almost instantly putting one to sleep.
Fire is synonymous with burning away negative energy and transmuting it into positive energy. Sitting and watching a bonfire while listening to the crackling sounds helps you come out of your mind to the present moment. It helps you let go and relax. This is why bonfires, fireplaces and campfire all represent relaxation.
Animals that symbolize relaxation
Whales are the gentlest giants of our planet. Furthermore, some believe that their beautiful songs emit vibrations which serve to heal all of Earth’s creatures. A painting of a whale hanging in your house can remind you of this gentleness, as can listening to the sound of a whale’s song.
Jellyfish symbolize trust, letting go and relaxation. A Jellyfish does not force anything. Instead, it allows the current of the water to take it exactly where it needs to be. This way, a jellyfish lives a life of complete trust and relaxation. This is also probably the reason why looking at a jellyfish is so relaxing.
Other symbols of rest and relaxation
23. Inverted triangle (water element)
Water is the element which symbolizes Yin and feminine energy. As you might imagine, yin, feminine energy, and water all carry common aspects of flow, ease, and gentle strength. On the contrary, you may find yourself carrying excessive masculine energy– especially in the modern world– if you feel overextended or exhausted. More water energy can help!
24. Bodhi tree
Bodhi is synonymous with Buddha, meditation, liberation and enlightenment. It is also known as the tree of wisdom and wisdom of the universe can only come to you when you are ready to let go of the mind’s chatter and go into the state of relaxation. Deep relaxation brings deep insights.
25. Floating clouds
When you were young, did you ever lay outside and watch the clouds pass by? This can serve as a mindful relaxation visualization; in yoga, I often tell my students to picture the sky, and then, imagine that each of their thoughts are like clouds floating by. Clouds can remind us to relax by showing us that nature is never in a hurry; eventually, they all get where they’re meant to go.
Bears in general represent strength and wisdom but they also represent balance and relaxation. This is because during the winter months bears take a long break from their day today life and go into hibernation. During this period, bears do not eat or drink, neither do they urinate or defecate. Bears spend most of their time relaxing, doing as little activity as possible. In this way, bears teach us the importance of relaxation and that only by relaxing can you build up the energy required to progress in life.
27. Goddess Pasithea
In Greek mythology, Goddess Pasithea is associated with relaxation, meditation, and higher states of consciousness.
Working with crystals, decorating your house with these symbols, or even planting certain flowers in your garden can all be beautiful rituals of self-devotion, especially if you’re feeling a spell of burnout coming on. Use these symbols to remind yourself that there’s more to life than burning the candle at both ends. Allow this nurturing to remind you to set boundaries in all areas of your life, and always allow yourself to take it easy sometimes!