Can’t switch off after work? Restless? Anxious? Thoughts endlessly going round your mind? Heart racing? Grumpy with your family for no particular reason? Maybe it is time to relax!
1. Make time
Relaxation may seem like indulgence, almost a taboo in our fast-paced 24/7 society, when in reality it should be part of a healthy lifestyle. Relaxation is just as important as eating healthily, exercising regularly and getting enough sleep, especially when you are running a business as well as trying to have a family and social life. So do pencil in some time for relaxation and keep that time free from commitments.
2. Get physical
When we are under pressure, our body produces stress hormones, mainly adrenaline and cortisol. Stress hormones are designed to help you deal with danger by running away or fighting. That is why physical activity is the best way to get rid of them and feel more at ease again. It does not really matter what you do: Walking, running, cycling, swimming, yoga, playing football or tennis, any exercise has a relaxing effect.
3. Get Out
If exercise is beneficial, then exercising or simply going for a leisurely walk outside is even better. Spending time in a natural environment can lift the mood and clear the mind, a walk before an exam can help recall learned material. It does not have to be the great outdoors, even small natural spaces in urban settings can increase happiness.
4. Be creative
Whether it is composing or carpentry, painting or playing the piano, knitting or writing poetry, being creative has a relaxing effect. This is probably because you have to concentrate on what you are doing and because it feels good to be absorbed in an activity you are enjoying.
5. Learn a relaxation technique
The ultimate way to relax must be to do nothing. Some people may find this quite difficult. This is where relaxation techniques come in. Relaxation techniques are routines, which induce a relaxed state of mind. The main ones are meditation, breathing techniques, progressive muscle relaxation, autogenic training and mindfulness exercises.