How do you chill out after a busy day? Can you unwind easily or do you still find yourself scrolling through Facebook an hour after you got home? Do you spend all night refreshing work emails and going over in your head what you said in that meeting (why did I say that? Cue panic!) I do too. But recently I’ve noticed there are a few things I can do to take a step back and look after me…
Things have been really busy recently (and unfortunately I didn’t hit my goal of one blog per week) and my little book of ideas keeps growing as I jot things down but actually writing up my ideas is another story.
It is okay though. I always told myself that blogging would not be another pressure to my life but more of an outlet to practice my creative writing and explore things that shape my life, capturing the developments that usually so quickly pass me by. Most certainly not another thing on the to-do list.
So in a sort of no pressure kind of way I wanted to share my steps to destressing, relaxing and having the ultimate self-care night for all you busy 20 somethings out there. There’s no denying we live in a very hectic world, where we are constantly bombarded by notifications popping up on our phone (snapchat, facebook, twitter, instagram… i’m looking at you) and I have really begun to understand the benefits of stepping away, or at least taking the right steps to having ‘down time’.
So here goes… as always, this is just my view from my own experiences and I’m a big believer that reading blogs on the internet can inspire you to make little changes. So even if you didn’t follow exactly the steps I follow, I’m sure you can adapt it to suit your lifestyle:
Scenario: Busy weekday evening (usually a Monday after typical Monday stress in the office… but all days can be as challenging!)
*Bonus Step* – Do your workouts in the morning, before you head off to work – that way you’ll feel more rested in the evening and that’s a chore ticked off the list (#sorrynotsorry – workouts are unfortunately a chore for me at the moment)
**Bonus Step Numero 2** – I usually spend half an hour running around the house when I get in, tidying up and doing any chores, before I start my chill out routine. This can be organising my gym kit in the morning to washing dirty pots from a rushed breakfast that morning.
Step 1: Get out those work clothes – whether you’re donned in smart business wear or have more a casual office look, nothing shackles me more psychologically than the outfit I’ve sat at my desk in all day (plus, restrictive waistbands – ‘aint nobody got time for that!)
Step 2: Run a bath/ have a soothing hot shower – wash the day away and you’ll instantly feel more relaxed (I usually bubble bath it up to the max)
Step 3: PJs!
Step 4: If my day has taken it out on me I try not to put too much emphasis on cooking up a storm – it saps energy that I just don’t have! Instead I opt for something healthy and simple… like an omelette or a piece of fish (that I can easily bake in the oven) with some salad or veg (frozen veg is the saviour here!). The reason I also opt for light and healthy, and having done my workout in the morning, means I can treat myself later if I wish, as that is certainly part of my unwind game!
Step 5a: Set the scene – Lighting. I’m talking smelly candles, tea lights, incense and fairy lights… whatever you have at your disposal to create that cosy and warm lighting.
Step 5b: Set the scene – Comfort. For me my ultimate cosy corner is quite simply in my bed (fresh linen just puts the cherry on the whole experience) but you may prefer to get snuggled up on the sofa. Either way, I’m talking pillows (as many as you can physically surround yourself with), soft blankets, duvet and the ultimate accessory – cosy socks.
Step 6: Interest (and distract your mind). Our minds are full of chatterings (Does my boss actually like me? Is that meal out next week going to be awkward? Have I got enough couscous in to make a healthy lunch tomorrow? What time do I need to get up to make the gym tomorrow? etc. etc.) so I find it is really important to distract my mind before sleeping. Whether I watch a crime thriller, my favourite comedy box set or tuck my head into a good book, being taken into a world of story is so important to step away from your own life’s chatterings.
Step 7: No electronics half an hour to an hour before sleep – no need to explain, we all know the benefits!
Zo Creative X