It’s well known that a healthy work/life balance is best for maintaining our physical and mental health, but sometimes it is easier said than done. Just because we have left our work environment physically does not mean that we’re not carrying the worries and stresses around with us in our free time. When you’re under more pressure than usual, you may need to proactively disconnect, i.e. engage in activities to help you switch off from those niggling worries and recharge the batteries.
To help you switch off, here are five simple tips which might enable you to relax after a hard day at work.
Relax in the bath
It may sound like a cliché, but simply lying in a hot bath can melt your troubles away and relax tension which you may not even realize you’re holding in your muscles and lower blood pressure. This is particularly true if you are sitting at a desk for much of the day and a hot bath with Epsom salt or essential oils may be just what you need. The water around you should feel comforting and you may even want to light some scented candles or play some gentle music.
Do some exercise
Exercise is a fantastic way to alleviate the symptoms of stress or anxiety. Putting your body through a workout will not only distract you from whatever work issues are on your mind, but will also promote the release of endorphins in your brain which provide the calm and happy feeling we experience after a workout. Getting regular exercise will also improve the quality of sleep you get which will help you to manage stress more effectively and prevent you from burning out.
Studies have shown that playing games which involve tactics, strategy and problem solving can simultaneously help us to relax and forget our stresses and enhance our cognitive abilities in general. Whether you enjoy playing poker or playing the odds at Unibet or prefer a game of solitaire or a Sudoku, just 30 minutes of refocusing your mind can make all the difference.
Eat a delicious and nutritious meal
When we are stressed many of us turn to easy comfort food to temporarily improve our mood, but why not put a little more effort in and nourish your body properly? Try giving your body a meal packed with the energy and vitamins it needs to repair itself and fuel you the next day. If you’re not much of a cook, why not head out to a nice restaurant with your partner, friends or family and really push the boat out? Read more about the connection between nutrition and stress at Live Life to the Fullest.
Try breathing exercises or meditation
Take yourself to a quiet space in the house and try to focus your mind on nothing but your breathing. It can be difficult to stop negative thoughts or worries entering our minds, but the more you focus on the simple motion of breathing the easier you’ll find it. Breathing techniques can help us to lower our heart rate and relax tension so we feel calm and centered. Very Well Mind has some great advice on breathing techniques.
Turn off your phone
If you have your work emails on your phone, switch off notifications and put the phone away. Spending too much time hopping from social media, the news, to work issues, to social media again is only going to fuel your brain’s anxiety. In addition, using screens right before bed has been shown to affect our quality of sleep, so turn off the phone at least an hour before you head up to bed.
Disclosure: This is a collaborative post, and the author’s views here do not necessarily reflect those of His & Hers Magazine.
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