Have you recently had a particularly long day of work that just never seemed to end? We’ve all been there. Maybe you were running around all day, hitting the books, or had to undergo a stressful situation. Either way, when it comes time to unwind, sometimes it’s hard to get in the right mindset and truly relax. Stress can often overtake our lives; however, it is important to realize that relaxation is more than just Netflixing in your pajamas; but a necessity to living a long, happy, and healthy life. With that being said, let’s jump into some strategies to help you get your chill on.
No Stress, Zone!
Coming home from work doesn’t necessarily mean the stress goes away. As much as we would love to have our homes be a stress-free zone, the reality is you might have chores to attend to or kids running around. Find a designated spot that you can dedicate solely to relaxation. Try being near natural light and fresh air, like a window or deck. Add some blankets and pillows for maximum comfort. If you like to paint or draw, set up an easel in your space! Or if you find reading relaxing, splurge on a nice, cozy chair to snuggle up and read in. Whatever it may be, make the space your own.
Try Meditation (Or Something Like It)
Meditation can do wonders for your body and stress. Take a few moments to close your eyes, focus on your breathing, and set your intentions. This can help you get into the right mindset to relax or decompress after a long day. If sitting still isn’t for you, try yoga. Not only does this stretch out your body (which can be tense after sitting or standing all day), but it also helps clear your mind. Don’t knock it ’til you try it!
Do Something You Love
This one seems obvious but trust me, it is easy to just plop yourself in front of the TV and watch whatever is on. Instead, try doing something you really love. Write in a journal or crack open that new book you’ve been wanting to read. Cook a fun, new recipe while listening to some music or go outside for a walk. Relaxing doesn’t mean you have to be lazy, but rather finding something that makes you happy and increases your inner zen.
But First, Get Stuff Done
Even if you were on an island in Tahiti, no one could even begin to relax knowing they have a million different things to do. Before you even attempt to relax, get things while you’re ahead. This could be finishing your presentation for work, making study guides before the next exam, even loading the dishwasher, doing laundry, or packing the kid’s lunch for the next day. Yes, it might not be the most appealing thing to do right when you get home, but in the long run, you’ll be happy you got these things out of the way. The earlier you get things done, the more time you have for yourself! If we’re being honest here, you probably place self-care close to, if not last, on your priority list, and by staying ahead of the game, this can move it up! Conveniently, this also makes you less likely to procrastinate on daily chores and sets you up for success in the future.
I cannot stress this one enough. We are all guilty of mindlessly scrolling through our phones or checking emails that should be left for the next day. If you can, even just for half an hour, turn off your phone and tune into yourself. Not only will this relax your eyes, especially if you are staring at a computer screen all day, but it will also eliminate the chance of ruining your zen with a phone call or text, (OMG mom). So leave your phone or laptop in another room, find your zen, and start relaxing!