It’s quite easy to get overwhelmed by the things happening around you. People tend to worry about several things all at once. Sometimes, you can’t really catch a break, and that is a normal occurrence for most of us.
When you’re expected to be productive and operate on a certain level most hours of the day, you’ll barely have time to relax and breathe. This unhealthy practice can lead to burnout and other mental and emotional concerns such as anxiety and depression.
This is the reason why a lot of people, especially in the work and academic setting, are advocating for mental health days. It is human to have a limit. There will be days that you won’t have the full capacity to be productive and do things, and that’s totally okay!
There is no set way to deal with stress as it would depend on how a person copes. But if you’re on the lookout for ways to relieve stress and things you can do to recharge, this article might be for you.
Why Is It Important to Take a Break?
Having a healthy outlet that you can use to recharge yourself is one of the most important things that you have to set. In the end, we are still humans and we can get burnt out. This can manifest differently for everyone, and it can get detrimental not only to our mental well-being but also to our physical state.
Taking breaks can also be beneficial to your work and productivity. If you’re feeling stressed and overwhelmed with your work, it’s easy to be demotivated, thus you won’t be able to give your 100% on the task at hand. When you give yourself time to rest and recharge, you will go back with a better mindset and a clearer headspace, which in turn can improve your output significantly.
Knowing when to pause and focus on yourself will ultimately do more good than harm. This can reset your mood and facilitate recovery. If done properly, the feeling of being drained will be eradicated and you’d have more energy to go on with your day.
What Are Things I Can Do For Stress Relief?
Rest days can be different for everyone. Some would prefer their days off completely on hibernation mode, away from everything and everyone. For others, rest days would involve them engaging in their favorite activities such as cooking, watching movies, writing, and even working out. Let’s explore this further…
Take a Rest: The most common thing you can do to relieve stress and recharge your body is to literally rest. Having a full eight hours of sleep (or more!) can significantly improve your mood and overall well-being.
Sometimes, it’s very easy for us to miss when our bodies send signals that they are in need of rest. If you’re tired and feeling stressed out, check if you’ve been having a good sleep. Perhaps you’ve been working on so many deadlines that you’ve sacrificed your sleep to the point that your body is begging you to take a break.
Get your eight hours in and feel recharged after. Ideally, if you’ve been up more than you’ve been asleep, it’s better for you to allot proper time to rest than take quick naps as these might make you feel more tired.
If you just need an energy boost throughout the day, a nap can work for you. A solid 30-minute nap can make a huge difference in your day.
Talk to Your Friends: Another thing you can do to manage your stress is to have more social interaction.
Now, this can be totally different for other people, but there are still some who get more energized by hanging out with their friends or peers. There is a feeling of relatedness which brings about comfort and consolation. A simple conversation or a shared meal can change the course of your day.
Additionally, more recent studies show that for some people, you don’t really need to be directly interacting together, you can be in a certain place doing different things, but still continue to enjoy each other’s company.
Being in a space with someone whom you share a secure connection with can directly improve your mood. You’ll feel recharged and refreshed just by being with them even though you’re doing things independently. They can just read a book while you’re painting or you can play games while they’re watching a movie.
Work on Your Hobbies: Revisiting or starting on hobbies is also one of the perfect ways to relieve stress. If you’re not a fan of staying still and doing nothing, try to work on other hobbies that would bring you comfort.
Though it’s totally okay to rest and be unproductive, some people feel more relieved when they’re active on things other than work. You can try activities such as cooking, baking, painting, or even pottery. These are all healthy outlets that you can engage in when you want to take a break but still keep your mind busy.
If you don’t trust yourself enough to do this all by yourself, there are classes that you can enroll in which provide beginner sessions for you to check out and try for yourself. Looking for other hobbies is the best route for those who are always open to trying new things. These people would usually want a clean slate and just want to enjoy and create a life outside of their work.
On the other side of the spectrum, if you’re the type who easily gets frustrated when things do not work out the way you want them to, try less output-based activities. There’s always a learning curve, especially if you’re just starting out, so there’s a potential for additional stress rather than actually reducing it. Getting into more active hobbies such as cycling, hiking, running, yoga or aerial yoga and generally working out might be more beneficial.
Getting Into An Active Lifestyle: There have been several studies that have shown a positive correlation between an active lifestyle and stress relief. Being active or working out, in general, is one of the best ways to relieve stress, as it produces endorphins that help improve your mood and emotional state. This works for most people as it is instrumental in calming their minds and re-shifting their overall focus.
When you stay active during exercises, you are more inclined to focus on a specific action. This aids in refocusing your mindset which in turn brings calmness and satisfaction. Notice how even though you feel physically tired after a run or a workout, you still feel good overall and there’s a sense of fulfillment present.
This is because the increased production of endorphins directly contributes to your positive feelings.
Yoga is also one of the best activities you can do to lessen your stress. It is a meditative practice that aims to achieve increased body and mind awareness, self-reflection, and overall relaxation.
How Can Yoga Help in Managing Stress and Anxiety?
A simple yoga routine can help lessen your stress and anxiety. Nowadays, there are tons of quick and easy yoga flows that can instantly help improve your mood and boost your energy levels. If you’re in need of an instant fix and you can spare a couple of minutes, then feel free to follow this quick flow.
With yoga, one of the most important things that you need to ease into is mindfulness. Mindful breathing, to start, will help you tremendously in achieving relaxation by deepening your connection with yourself, and allowing you to focus on the current moment.
Through this, you will be able to slowly let go of things that might cause unnecessary stress and anxiety.
- To start, make sure that you’re in a comfortable position. You can either do this while seated on a chair or you can pull out your yoga mat and get settled on it. The most important thing is you’re feeling comfortable and you’re not restricting any part of your body.
- Drop your shoulders. Place your hands on your sides or your lap.
- Keep your eyes closed or you can maintain a soft gaze toward a specific point.
- Slowly focus on your breathing. Then, with every breath, allow yourself to get deeper and slower. Maintaining your focus throughout.
- Continue to take long breaths. Go on with this for a few seconds or until satisfied.
As you do this, you can feel your breath get more stable and your body more relaxed. Once you’ve got this covered, you may move on to the routine below.
- Starting with a seated pose or Sukhasana, continue being comfortable in the position. Lengthen your spine and be fully aware of your body.
- Then, slowly stretch to your side. Make sure that your left arm is fully extended and you can feel your side stretched. By doing this, you create a good space for your breath on your left side.
- If you need more support, you can place your right hand on the mat. Continue this for a couple of seconds before switching to the other side.
- Then, after this, proceed with a slight twist. Shift your upper body to the right. Place your right palm on your left knee and keep your left palm on your mat behind you for support.
- Inhale and as you exhale, slowly twist to your right. Make sure that your chest is lifted up as you do this.
- Do this for a couple of breaths then shift to the other side.
- Come back to the center and starting position. You may take a break as you work on your breathing.
- Align your spine and make sure that your shoulders are relaxed.
- Now, begin a forward fold. You may slowly bring your upper body down and lay your arms flat on the mat.
- Stretch your upper body. Feel your spine lengthen.
- Do not forget to focus on your breathing. Stay in the position for a couple of seconds before going back to your original position.
- Then, proceed to stand up. This is so you can also work on stretching your lower body.
- Bring your feet together and slowly take deep breaths. Open your chest and relax your shoulders.
- Then, start with the tree pose. Lift your right knee up and press your right foot just above your left knee.
- Ensure that your left foot is firmly placed on the ground. If you’re having trouble balancing yourself, you can hold on to your right knee for support. Otherwise, you can keep your palms together.
- Stay in the position for a few breaths and switch to the other side.
- The flow will end with a Mountain Pose. Keep your feet flat on the ground. Maintain a good gap in between.
- Keep your arms to the side. Palms should be open and facing forward.
- Take deep breaths. Slowly inhale and exhale. Open your chest and straighten your spine.
- Do this for a couple of seconds before ending the practice.
Ways to Relieve Stress
In the end, relieving stress and anxiety can differ from person to person. There are several ways to relieve stress by taking a break and recharge your mind and body. What’s important is you take the time off and give yourself ample time to rest and ease up.
There’s already a lot of pressure going on around you on a daily basis and you owe it to yourself and your body to rest. Do not wait for yourself to feel burnt out and be completely demotivated.
As early as now, if you feel like you’re lacking energy and motivation, maybe it’s time to take some steam off through some of the ways we’ve discussed here.
Keep in mind that listening to what your body needs can help you improve your overall health. Not just physical, but also your mental well-being. You must always put yourself as a priority and maintain a good relationship with your body.
If you think that none of these things are helping you recover, please consult a medical professional as there might be other underlying problems that need more attention.
The journey to a well-balanced life is not easy but is definitely worth pursuing.