“There is more to life than increasing its speed.” — Mahatma Gandhi
On a scale of 1 to 10, how relaxed are you? Chances are, you’re coming in at a solid 3 (as in, unfortunately not very relaxed at all).
Most of us really like to relax, but life often gets in the way. Every time we intend to wind down, something else pops up … one last message to send or project to do.
Pretty soon, we’re rusty in the relaxation department. It’s been left out of our routines for so long that perhaps we’ve even forgotten how to truly unwind. Or, you might feel guilty kicking back when you have things on your to-do list.
But here’s the deal: Relaxing isn’t just fun, it’s healthy, both for your mind and body. If you set aside proper time to relax you’ll be helping your mood, your blood pressure, and even your muscles.
It’s time to realize relaxation isn’t luxury — it’s a necessity.
Don’t worry, though, if adding relaxation back to your routine seems like an impossible feat. You do have the time — trust us! Here’s a list of ways to relax (beyond zoning out in front of the TV), even if you’re not used to it. Plus, these will leave you feeling more relaxed and refreshed than a night with streaming or Instagram scrolling.
- Practice deep breathing in your happy place. Head to that nook in your house that makes you feel ahhh (bring a cup of tea with you and a cozy blanket, too). Then, focus on breathing in through your nose, filling your belly with air, then out again.
- Walk outside with your phone in your pocket (or better yet, leave it at home). Wander in nature, or around your block, and feel the calming effect of the greenery and the joy of being disconnected.
- Use an adult coloring book. There’s no pressure to “make it look good” — you’re coloring for your eyes only. Choose what colors make you happy, and let your mind drift as you fill in the blank spaces.
- Take a loooong bath. If a bath seems like a foreign concept to you, it’s time to make a date with your tub. Treat yourself to candles, zen music, and maybe even a glass of bubbly (or sparkling water) to sip while you soak.
- Do a five-minute meditation. You have five minutes — we swear. Find a beginner’s meditation on YouTube (we like this one), or download an app like Headspace or Calm.
- Give yourself a facial. Not only will your skin thank you, but you’re gifting yourself a facial massage (and what’s more relaxing than that?). Use your best products and light a candle or two so you feel those spa vibes.
- Stretch it out. There’s no need to do any sort of formal yoga routine (though if you have one, by all means, do it!). Just practice those favorite stretches you’ve been doing since grade school gym class (you know, touch your toes, reach your arms into the air — that sort of thing). Let your muscles loosen up and your brain wander.
Take some time this weekend to really relax, (even if it’s just for 10 minutes). The more often you do it, the more likely it will become part of your day-to-day routine, and the happier your life will be!
Emily and the EveryDay Happy Team
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“Sometimes the most productive thing you can do is relax.” — Mark Black
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