One of the most stressful activities is trying to relax. After all, when we’re stagnant, things can become an annoyance, but when we’re busy, we’d love nothing more than to do nothing. So, what’s the best way to find something in-between? The answer to that, however, is by implementing more relaxing activities into your routine, which is why we’ve listed out a few of our favourites below…
Although exercise might seem like a strenuous activity, it can provide tremendous benefits for relaxation. According to the ADAA, exercise is one of the top activities for stress relief, particularly if you go for more than 30 minutes per day. Plus, the amazing other benefits of increased endorphin levels, as well as a better sense of self-esteem, getting into an exercise routine and sticking to it can be one of the top ways to manage stress, and one you should implement into your schedule. Regardless of the activity, the most important aspect is keeping your schedule consistent as well as duration challenging, providing the best results long-term.
Listen To A Podcast
Another great activity to relax, podcasts have been known to help people zone out and listen to the comforting words of someone’s story or perspective. With over 550,000 podcasts currently available, you might be asking “what are some popular podcasts?” While podcasts can come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, go after some you consider to be comforting or fun to listen to, getting your mind onto something else for a bit.
Read A Book
A similar principle to listening to podcasts, reading a book can help tremendously with getting your mind wrapped up into someone else’s story for a bit. The sad part, however, is that not nearly enough of us read books; as noted by Pew Research, a staggering 24 percent of Americans haven’t touched a book in the past year. Those people are not only missing out on one of the most relaxing activities but also one that takes us away from technology and into a different world. Make a reading list for the books you’ve always wanted to read and create a schedule, as this is one activity that’s widely underrated.
Try Out Yoga
The number of yogis is booming. According to The Good Boy, between 2012 and 2016, the number of Americans practising yoga grew over 50 percent, and it’s easy to see why. By using a combination of deep breathing, stretching, and mindful meditation, yoga is widely used to reduce stress, recenter your mental balance, and give an overall feeling of wellness to your body. Treat yourself to some yoga around town soon, as the support of this community is one that’s all in it for the same goal as you.
Cook A Meal
Often overlooked as a strategy to relax, cooking is a pretty great mechanism to consider. According to research presented by Smithsonian Mag, cooking is known to boost mood and creative spirit, as well as give a sense of accomplishment…all of which can boost serotonin levels. Try to find a few recipes you think you’d enjoy, as this is something that you’re only going to get better and better at with time.
Look At Some Art
As a practice, art therapy has helped thousands of people battle against anxiety and stress. According to research presented by PsychCentral, taking a look at some art can help you explore your “inner experience” and tap into a sense of purpose or drive. Head down to your local museum for a day if you’re feeling a little overwhelmed, as you’d be surprised at what the effects can do for you.
Treat Yourself To A Float Session
One of the best forms of meditation, sensory deprivation has been proven to have great effects on relaxation. In fact, as noted in a study by The University of Tulsa, float tank sessions and sensory deprivation were consistently proven by participants to reduce stress and anxiety, leaving a refreshed feeling afterwards. Although one of the more costly items on the list, the price can be worth the experience.
Get Out In Nature
According to research presented by Health.com, there’s a strong correlation between the brain, body, and background noise, especially in the outdoors. After all, who hasn’t calmly gotten lost in their head on a hike or walk around the park? Plus, as an activity that’s practically free, getting yourself out into nature can be one of the wisest decisions when you’re feeling wound up.
Enjoy Some Tea
As long as you’re avoiding heavy doses of caffeine, tea can have a pretty calming effect. According to a study presented by Elite Daily, decaffeinated green tea and black tea are known for reducing stress levels significantly, which is why it might not be a bad idea to include a couple of bags at your desk or at home. With relatively easy prep, this is a great go-to on the move.
Focus On Deep Breathing
Finally, when you’re looking for something to do in the moment, deep breathing exercises can become your best friend. According to the American Institute on Stress, deep breathing can slow your heart rate, relax your muscles, decrease your blood pressure, and even increase your metabolism. Check out a few of the different methodologies you can try and see which one works best for you, as this can virtually always come in handy anywhere, anytime.
What are your favourite activities to reduce stress? Comment with your insights below!