Relaxation doesn’t come easily.
You can’t pause in the middle of your workday, while you sit at your desktop, stressed and ready to boil over — and suddenly — relax! Relaxation isn’t a magic trick you can pull out of a hat. Relaxation is, instead, something that has to be cultivated with time and effort. It might take a few hours for your cortisol levels to drop after a particularly frustrating work day, but the right relaxation method can help.
Imagine one of the worst days of your job — there’s a higher demand and your workload is increasing. You don’t know how you’re going to get it all done, and you feel increasingly trapped and helpless — you didn’t sign on for this! And they’re most definitely not paying you enough.
If you’re getting stressed just thinking about it, then you’ve probably been here before. While people get stressed for many different reasons, work is a common cause. Since we need an income to survive, most of our well-being hangs on our ability to perform a job.
In the same way that everyone is affected differently by stress, people find relaxation in different ways.
How can you find a relaxation method that works well for you?
Setting Boundaries Between Your Work and Private Life
To start, considering setting more boundaries with your work and private life. If work can still reach you when you’re at home, you may want to consider cutting those ties. If your job requires you to be on-call, ask yourself if the job is still worth it. You may need to devote a few hours each month to being on-call (consider the life of a nurse, for instance) but overall, if you can be done with work at 5 p.m. each day, you should be.
When you’ve finished working for the day, make sure the office won’t call you to follow up about a problem. Make sure employees can’t reach you. If you have a work email, don’t check it, even if you’re stressed about a particular issue. When things have closed up for the day, keep them closed. If you let work follow you around, chances are, you’ll never calm down.
Spend More Time on Vacation
Calm people who know how to relax take vacations. Vacations can lower your stress rates in just two days (as long as you take a non-stressful one.) On vacation, you might find that a particular style works well for you: you might want to surf Hawaii and let the activity of surfing wash away your cares. Or you could kick back, relax, and enjoy a cultural experience like a Maui Luau in Hawaii. Some people thrive on getting out of their head and back into their body, and an activity like surfing might be the perfect thing for your stress levels.
If you’d rather engage with your mind and let fun distract you, you could head over to RV Parks in North Bend, OR, and spend a weekend gambling at The Mill Casino. If you’d rather not use your mind or your body, but instead rest both completely, it would be worth researching places to see on Florida’s Gulf Coast, where you could shop, amble, and enjoy the relaxing beauty of the beach.
Vacations are a great way to relax, and there’s more than one way to take one. They’re not the only good way to relax, however. Besides taking vacations to lower our stress levels, we can also cultivate a list of things that help us calm down. Even setting boundaries with work isn’t always enough–so what helps you feel good?
Retreating Into Your Home Oasis
Some people love a good mess. You feel calm as soon as your fingers touch a glob of cool, wet paint — and you feel relaxed the minute you start freestyle finger painting in the evenings. While this is a perfect relaxation method for some, it could send others through the roof! If you hate messes, this relaxation method would do you more harm than good. Instead, you’re better off with clean, organized relaxation — perhaps a bubble bath in the upgraded bathroom you got from kitchen and bathroom remodeling in New Jersey. When you know what you need, and what makes you feel great, you’re closer to finding your personal method of relaxation.
Consider some of these common relaxation methods, and see which ones work well for you:
- Journaling. Some people hate journaling, and the presence of a blank journal just feels like a homework assignment. If you enjoy writing and getting your thoughts and feelings down on paper, however, journaling could be effective for you.
- Meditation. When we meditate, our stress goes down. You may feel a little odd meditating at first, but it’s helpful for anyone, even if they’re not the “hippie” type. Studies have shown that a little meditating, just focusing on your breath or closed eyelids, can help reduce your cortisol levels.
- Taking a walk. When you head outside, leaving your phone and home-troubles behind you, you may be able to calm down. Not everyone enjoys a walk outside, but if you feel calmed by nature and being alone, a walk could be effective.
- Talking things out. Most people feel better after sharing their woes with another person, even if it’s just to rant about a co-worker. If you want to complain about how you were treated, at the end of a work day, a friend or partner who’s willing to listen can help you unwind.
- Listening to music. We tend to have our music on as background noise, but some calming music, or even nature sound effects, can be a great relaxation technique. When you actively listen to music, focusing solely on the music and not doing anything else, you may find that the sounds help calm and reorient you.
- Creating. You may have a particular hobby, like calligraphy, sculpting, or cooking. If your hobby makes you feel good, you could use it as a method of relaxation. Even something simple can be rewarding, like making a fire in your firepit and sitting outside at night. If there’s something you love to create, consider doing it at the end of a stressful day.
Stress isn’t healthy for your body or your mood. Stress can disrupt your sleep, make you snappish towards people you love, and keep you from enjoying life. If a manager or boss has you stressed about the way they’re treating you, consider standing up to him or her. Ask for the wages you deserve for the work you’re doing, or consider moving on to better things. Create boundaries between your work and life, and once you’ve done those two things: find a method of relaxation that works for you. Stress doesn’t get to have control when you meet it head-on.