Relaxation almost seems like a myth sometimes, right? There are only 24 hours in the day and whether you are juggling family, work, school, fitness, home, or just life (or all of these), you’re bound to get a little stressed. The last thing on your to-do list might be relaxing, but it really can be a necessary part of your day!
Indulging in a little chill-out time can result in:
- Reduced fatigue
- Increased focus and concentration
- A greater sense of well-being
- Even spontaneous smiling
So while it’s important to get your tasks done, it’s also important to not burn yourself out. When should you start? There’s actually no better day to begin relaxing than today—National Relaxation Day (hint, hint). So to help you get in chill mode, we’ve compiled 10 easy (and also our favorite) ways to relax. Enjoy!
- Take a meditation moment. Meditation is a great way to release yourself from the “pressure” of time so you can relax and just “be in the moment.” Sound like too much new-age woo? It doesn’t have to be. It can be as simple as this quick, restorative meditation: First, find a quiet space. Sit up straight in a chair with your feet on the floor, close your eyes, and focus on your breathing. Inhale through your nose, breathe out through your mouth. Do this for a few minutes or whatever length of time makes you feel comfortable. Start with a minute or two, then work your way up to 15. Relax, you got this!
- Loosen up a little. Need a quick upper back tension reliever to feel more at ease? Try this: First, place a warm towel or heat wrap around your shoulders. Then, sit down, close your eyes, and relax your upper body (your face, too). Breathe deeply. Do this for 10 minutes and feel the tension in your upper back melt away.
- Indulge in a spa day—in your own home. Create your own spa at home. (Coconut milk bath, anyone?) To do it, you’ll want to start with some relaxing bath salts, even a simple blend like Epsom salt and lavender essential oil will do. Next, you’ll want to slather on a pore-cleansing mud mask. Once your face is muddy and your bath is hot, light some candles, flick on your favorite tunes, and soak your cares away. You’re welcome. Want more spa-at-home ideas? Get ‘em here.
- Sleep in (or take a power nap). A full eight hours of sleep can leave you feeling refreshed and relaxed, and help keep your cortisol levels in check. But if you don’t have eight hours to spare, try a nap. A 15-to-20 minute snooze can do the trick, but a 90-minute nap is even better, allowing you to get restorative REM sleep. Just don’t forget to set your alarm!
- Make a shake. Cool, healthy, delightful. Yes, we’re talking about you. But we’re also talking about Shakeology. Need a nutrition break? Take a few minutes to treat yourself to your favorite flavor, then sip and savor. Ahh, life is good.
- Sip some herbal tea. Who doesn’t feel relaxed sipping hot tea? Just the act alone feels soothing! So break out your favorite mug and choose from a variety of calm-infusing herbal teas like chamomile, valerian, lavender, passionflower, lemon balm, skullcap, and decaffeinated green tea.
- Listen to music. Of course, everyone has their own style of chill music, so plug in whatever works for you, then kick back and relax. Just know that the beats per minute in a song play a key role in causing the alpha brainwaves that make you feel so relaxed.
- Spend time in nature. Whether it’s an adventurous hike or a walk in the park, communing with nature is one of the best ways to relax. You’ll get a healthy mix of sunshine, fresh air, and exercise to help rejuvenate your body and mind. And most of the time, it’s free. Tip: Unplug and try it without your smartphone, if you can.
- Take a whiff of this. Vetiver. Bergamot. Chamomile. Frankincense. Rose. Essential oils like these can rock your sense of smell and help you feel calmer and more relaxed.
- Let yourself laugh. Laughter is the tonic that cures what ails you, especially stress. It relaxes your muscles, burns calories, boosts immunity, releases endorphins, and can even help shift your perspective during stressful situations. So go watch some wacky YouTube videos or find a funny movie to see. Once you feel how relaxed you are after some light chuckling or a full-on guffaw, you’ll probably want to keep doing it again and again.