Wellness | Top 5 Ways To Unwind After Work
Without us even being aware of it, we hold energy that is carried over from our day into our night. If this energy is not properly dealt with, it can make it’s way into the following day and even the rest of our lives. A proper “unwind” routine is essential for letting go of all that has happened in the day, to move forward in a positive way. We have created a list of our top ways to let go of our day and prepare for a restful slumber.
Before continuing with the list, I want to stress the importance of time management. This does not mean that you need to construct a strict table of deadlines just to fill your evening. By time management, I mean, managing your time in a way that will most positively affect you. If you are stressing about fitting in activities or getting down on yourself about not having time to finish your routine list, this will only end up biting you in the booty. Move through each activity with intention and strive to gain all that you can in the time you are given.
Also remember that everyone is different, we destress in our own unique ways. Don’t feel discouraged if these “unwinding” techniques don’t work for you. This is simply a guide to get you thinking about a routine that can work best.
1. Go for a run or engage in physical activity
Whether this means jogging through your favourite part of town, doing an in-home HIIT workout, cycling or hiking, it is important to increase your heartrate for at least 30 minutes in the day. Regular activity can have a positive impact on depression, anxiety and ADHD. Engaging in physical activity relieves tension and stress, boosts mental and physical energy, and promotes well being by releasing endorphins. Try to add the mindfulness aspect, feel your feet hit the ground, how does it make your entire body feel? If you’re outside, listen to the wind and the sounds around you. If you’re inside, focus on your thoughts, where does your mind seem to be taking you? Before and after engaging in physical activity, always be sure to stretch.
2. Take a bath
This is a simple activity that you can turn into your own personal ritual. By adding flowers, herbs and lighting candles, you can create the ambience perfect for your given situation. I like to listen to relaxing music, given my mood. I even wear an eye mask at times to heighten my other senses, and allow my mind to wander wherever it may choose. Lighting incense like sage and palo santo and burning essential oils like lavendar and patchouli can facilitate the relaxation process.
3. Cook a healthy dinner
This can serve as the greatest therapy if you allow it to. Following a bath, I like to dress in my most comfortable outfit, blast my favourite tunes and take to the kitchen. Creating a healthy wholesome meal is an amazing addition to any relaxation ritual. Not only are you spending your time productively, but you are cognisant of the nutrients that fill your body. This will be both physically and mentally beneficial to your body and mind.
4. Meditation and or yoga
This may sound cliché, but unwinding from a long day with yoga and meditation is a surefire win in all cases. One thing to keep in mind is that the benefits only come when you let them. Forcing yourself to try and meditate or stretch when it’s not meant to be will only end in harm. Meditation can be threatening to some, but truly, all that you are doing is allowing your brain to have no thoughts. Something so easy, yet so challenging. You don’t need to have a full ceremony with crystals, candles, sage and all of that. You can meditate on the go, in your room, on a plane, in a car, the possibilities are endless. You can meditate with music or not, it doesn’t matter, it is your time and you can spend it how you like.
One of my favorite evening activities. There is no better way to unwind than to reflect on the days events. It serves as a free form of therapy that many more of us should take advantage of. This shouldn’t feel like a chore and can be as simple as jotting down a few thoughts before your head hits the pillow. It is also fun to experiment with keeping a dream log. Leave your journal on your bedside counter and when you wake up, write the first things that come to mind. This will serve as a collection of the events that happen in your mind while you are sleeping.