6 Simple Ways to Relax
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Relaxation. A concept some people don’t get the pleasure of experiencing often (myself included). Whether you are in college, a stay at home mom/dad, a traveler, a “40 hours a week” worker, or just about anything else, it’s hard to find time to relax sometimes. With so much to do in a day, who has time to relax? Well, it’s time to change your mindset! Not only is it physically, mentally, and emotionally beneficial to relax, it’s also something we all deserve in our busy lives. The best part is that relaxation doesn’t have to take up a lot of time! Follow these tips and see for yourself how beneficial relaxation can be for you!
1.) Write down your to-do list
Whether we are fully conscious of it or not, we make lists pretty often in our minds. To-do lists, shopping lists, daily routine lists, etc. And we also may not be fully conscious of it, but these lists consume a lot of our thoughts. Imagine your brain like a bowl. The more lists you have and the more things that are on those lists, the more you fill up your brain bowl. Trying to remember so many things can be stressful and cause us to panic.
My advice is to write down your lists on a piece of paper or in a notebook! Doing this is the same as taking the lists from your brain and transferring them to paper. Now, you have an empty brain bowl to put other things into it such as happy thoughts, concentration and relaxation! I recommend buying a cute little notebook to carry around with you to make it easier to write down your lists on (I bought the one above from Wal-Mart for a very cheap price). This has made a huge difference for me.
This is my personal favorite method for quick relaxation! Yoga has so many proven benefits for the human body and mind. There are many different ways you can use yoga and meditation to relax, and I suggest trying multiple kinds to see which you enjoy the most (my personal favorite is flow yoga). You don’t have to be an expert to do this; just sitting on your mat would help increase relaxation! If you already practice yoga, try to set a specific time each day to practice. It doesn’t have to be a long practice; any amount of time helps!
For those who have never practiced yoga, there are hundreds of books and online videos to help you get started. Two of my favorite free, online yoga teachers are Sarah Beth and Yoga By Candace (both can be found on YouTube). They both have plenty of yoga videos to help you get started and do an amazing job of helping you relax. And if you don’t wish to try yoga, at least be self-aware of your thoughts long enough to feel a sense of relaxation. Whichever you choose to do will benefit you. WARNING: once you start yoga, you might have a hard time stopping (it’s a-m-a-z-i-n-g)!
3.) Surround yourself with relaxation
I learned this through personal trial and error. Being a full-time college student, having a job, playing tennis, being apart of extra circular activities, and making time for social life, I had no time to worry about a clean room or car. I would leave cloths on the floor, things all over my dressers, I never made my bed, I left trash in my car, and the list goes on and on. Relaxation was difficult because just like my daily life, my room and car was also a mess. I was tired of feeling like a walking trash bin; something needed to change. I painted my room, rearranged my furniture, and deep cleaned everything in my room (and my car). There’s no doubt this was an amazing choice.
My room now looks like a new version of Earth Bound and smells like one too. It is a warm brown color, with matching white, brown and turquoise accents. It is cozy, matching and clean! Every time I go in there I feel a sense of relaxation and calm and it really affects my mood in a positive way! I also surrounded myself in little Buddha and yoga figurines that remind me to breathe, relax, and remain calm. Doing this to my bedroom has made such a huge impact on my life and I recommend doing this for yourself! It may require a little time and money but it is worth it!
4.) Don’t get worked up while driving
Driving is stressful, there is no doubt about that. People become impatient, rude, and fast-paced while driving and one person’s bad habits rub off onto other drivers, causing a chain reaction of anger. Most of us drive multiple times in one day, and that leaves many opportunities for us to become stressed. While driving, we all need to learn two things:
Patience is required while driving. We all have somewhere to be and we all want to get there fast, but speeding, cutting people off, and running through stop signs only makes people mad. We need to slow down and relax. This will not only help us to relax, but it will also make the road safer for everyone as well.
Understanding is also very important. When someone cuts us off, we assume they are the worst kind of person. We might yell, honk, or put up a not-so-friendly finger in their direction. Whatever we do to retaliate, we are not as understanding as we should be. Perhaps they are late to work and if they are late they will be fired? What if they just didn’t see you and it was a complete accident? What if their loved one was just rushed to the hospital? Whatever the reason is for their mistake, it isn’t our place to assume why it is they did it. It is our place to be understanding and let it go. Accidents happen and we all need to be patient and more understanding with one another.
5.) Take note of what you have in life
Sometimes all we need in life is to take a step back and look at all the good things we have. Getting caught up in all the stress and issues we run into in a day can blind us from what we have. In order to relax, sometimes we just have to take a mental note of the things we have! Here is the mental list I go through in order to relax and remember all the good things I have in life:
I am thankful for:
- My health
- All of my friends, family, and boyfriend
- My dog and my two cats
- The opportunities and chances I get each day
- The sunshine and for nature
- All of the little things that make me happy, big or small
The list goes on and will most likely be different for you, but as long as you acknowledge the things you have, you will realize that whatever problems you are facing aren’t as big as you originally thought they were. Relax and look at all that you have in life. Life is meant to be enjoyed, so enjoy it all!
Your read that right. Color! I don’t know if you have heard yet or not, but adults are starting to color in coloring books just like kids do! One day, someone said, “who says coloring is just for kids?” and started coloring themselves. Then, something even better happened! They figured out it’s one of the most relaxing things you can do! Don’t knock it until you try it. Coloring helps to focus all of your attention on the present moment of you coloring; a time of relaxation and thoughtlessness.
Above is an example of how the “adult” coloring book pages look (I have yet to color it of course). I aim to complete at least one coloring page a week; just a little bit a day. You can buy coloring books just about anywhere, although I got these two on Amazon! Get your own Animal kingdom coloring book here, and your own Lost Ocean coloring book here. This works so well in helping me relax and I’m so glad I kept my preschool crayons all these years!
I hope these tips bring some relaxation into your life and help you get through your day a little happier.
Thank you readers and don’t forget to smile!