Eight Easy Ways To Relax After A Stressful Day
The past year has undoubtedly been incredibly stressful. In addition to the woes of modern life, COVID-19 has had an unprecedented impact on our lives, and every day, we face challenges that can be overwhelming and difficult to deal with.
Most people are stressed at some point in their lives. Unfortunately, stress can have significant behavioral and psychological effects, such as eating unhealthily, increased drinking and smoking, feeling anxious and depressed, and experiencing feelings of loneliness.
To prevent your mental and physical health from taking such a turn, it’s essential to know how to manage stress and relax. Finding ways to relax can help keep your mind and body healthy and recover from everyday stresses. The good thing is, you don’t even need to take out significant time to relax; even short activities can help.
Here are eight great ways to relax in stressful times.
Drink herbal tea
A hot cup of tea can help take the edge off occasional anxiety and stress. It would help if you experimented with different herbal tea blends to determine what works for you. Drinking tea is often associated with feelings of relaxation and a positive mood since its chemical properties can help make your brain alert and recover from stress.
Some of the most popular herbal teas that can help you support and soothe your overall wellbeing are peppermint, lavender, and chamomile tea. You should also consider turmeric tea which has anti-depressant and anti-anxiety effects and is also rich in anti-inflammatory compounds.
Solve a puzzle
Many people turn to problem-solving as a way of relaxing. Contrary to what many people think, focusing your brain on solving puzzles and mysteries relaxes your brain, even if it’s presented with a challenge. This is because our brains are busy making sense of random patterns. Even if we aren’t aware of it, our brains visualize shapes and images that make the entire experience enjoyable.
Stimulating jigsaw puzzles for adults can result in other psychological benefits, too, including improved creativity, heightened memory, and dopamine production, which is the chemical that improves our optimism, confidence and boosts our ability to concentrate.
Listen to music
Music can have an incredible effect on your mind and body. Upbeat music can make you feel optimistic, fast music can help you concentrate, and slow music can relax your muscles and relax your mind. This is precisely why music is a great way to relax and manage stress.
Research suggests that music around 60 beats per minute can cause your brain to synchronize with the beat, resulting in alpha brainwaves. These brain waves are present when you’re conscious and relaxed, and since music is so accessible, you should turn it on when you’re feeling stressed.
Many people swear by meditation as a way of relieving stress. Globally, between 200 and 500 million people meditate, and since 2012, the number of people practicing it has tripled. If you’ve never meditated, doing it for the first time can feel strange. But you should start committing 5 to 30 minutes a day, eliminate distractions, and get comfortable.
To meditate, you need to focus your mind on the present and breathe slowly and deeply. If you find your mind wandering, bring it back by focusing on your breathing. As you incorporate meditation into your daily routine, you’ll find you’re able to do it for longer, thereby increasing the stress relief you get from it.
Over the past few years, aromatherapy has attracted a lot of attention. Once upon a time, aromatherapy products were quite tricky to find but, today, you can easily find diffusers, candles, essential oils, and bath products even in grocery stores. It’s an excellent option for stress relief because you can use it passively with practically no side effects.
Research suggests that aromatherapy can alter behavior and brain waves and decrease cortisol levels, commonly known as the stress hormone. Different aromatherapy scents have varying effects, and you should combine them with other stress relievers, such as meditation or massage, for maximum impact.
Take a hot bath
After a long, hard day, many people prefer nothing more than soaking in warm water. Bathing has a therapeutic effect because your skin releases endorphins when it touches soothing warm water the same way it releases endorphins when the sun hits your skin. It also increases blood flow and improves your breathing.
Additionally, stress causes your muscles to contract. When you take a dip in hot water, your muscles loosen up, allowing you to relax. A bath can also help you reduce feelings of pessimism and depression since it gives you a sense of closeness, comforting you at the same time.
For the best bathing experience, make sure the water temperature doesn’t exceed your own body temperature. You should also add oils like lavender, coconut, or rose for the aroma and make your skin feel soft. Soak for fifteen to twenty minutes and enjoy the experience.
Write in a Journal
When worrying thoughts enter your mind, it can be hard to get rid of them. They lead to one thought after the other and it’s easy to get bogged down by all kinds of stressful thoughts. One of the best ways to regain your focus in such situations is by writing.
Writing in a journal can help you embrace your anxious thoughts and give your brain a rest. You’re transferring your worries onto a piece of paper to make them go away, allowing you to feel lighter and happier. You should also write down your tasks for the next day, which sends a signal to your brain that everything is taken care of and you won’t forget anything important.
You should also use words of encouragement to act as fuel for how you want to feel. Write these in the present tense, such as “I am strong” instead of “I want to be strong” to talk yourself into being your most powerful self.
Take a walk
Walking has benefits that go beyond the physical and is a great way to destress. It gives you time to think and refocus your thoughts. Additionally, breathing in fresh air is an excellent way to give your body natural stress-relief.
When you’re stressed, your muscles tend to get tense. By walking in the correct posture, you unknot those muscles and get them to work. You should also do some shoulder rolls back and forward and swing your arms freely.
Walking is a form of exercise and when you exert your body, it releases endorphins, the “happy drug.” The more you push yourself and get your heart up, the more you’ll notice your walk is ending with you in a better mood.
Everyone needs to unwind after a stressful day, and practicing the above can be an excellent way to do that. You need to experiment with different activities to figure out which ones effectively provide you with stress relief.
The most important thing you can do is try not to give up. Start by picking one of these activities and be consistent. Even taking out as little as fifteen minutes every day can significantly impact your overall mood and health. Don’t worry; there are stress-relieving tactics for everyone and, with a little bit of experimentation, you’ll find yours too.