When was the last time you had a quality time dedicated to relaxing? The modern age we are living in forces us to spend more time at work, and since one day has only twenty-four hours, the contemporary “average Joe” chooses to renounce relaxing time in favor of work. Stress is on the rise for the past decade, and according to several statistics, around 80% of workers today are exposed to this condition.
Of course, there is an option to avoid stressful situations, but rather often, this is not possible. Stress is eating us from the inside out and makes our lives miserable if we let it take over. Still, devoting some time of the day to immerse yourself into relaxation is a good solution to battle stress, calm your nerves, and make you feel better.
The only important thing is, that you need to schedule that time and prioritize it. Don’t avoid it – it’s time for you to start caring about yourself.
Cancel all of your obligations tonight, and organize a relaxing and stress-relieving time.
When is a good time to relax?
Basically, any time can be determined for this. In general, I recommend the evening, or at least sundown when the city life is slowly losing its pace. There is also this soothing feeling, coming from the absence of daylight, which will help you to unwind while your body triggers the relaxing mechanism as it prepares to go to sleep.
On the other hand, if there is no possibility to separate some time for yourself in the evening, daytime is also suitable. Just remember to cover your windows. The color of the sheets covering the windows should not be aggressive, such as red or orange; choose a calming color such as cream or purple. It will bathe your room in butter-shaded color and calm you.
For a start, put some relaxing tunes on, and set up the atmosphere. Luckily, the Internet is full of meditation tunes which can be used for free. Find the one which reflects your mood and suits you best.
1. Wash away the stress
Simple lying on the couch and resting is a good practice in the prepared scenery. But, to relax and shake down all of that stress, you must do something prior enjoying in your peaceful oasis. Start with a warm bath, scented with a few drops of essential oils. There is one simple rule that must be followed – don’t think about anything. Concentrate on the warm sensation of water on your skin.
This will help you not just to relax your muscles, but the clear your mind as well. Try to endure as high temperature of the water as possible, but be careful not to burn yourself. Hot water can help your blood course faster, making muscles supplied with oxygen more efficiently, and thus more relaxed.
In case that you have chosen the shower over a bath tub, there is an Eastern wisdom about meditation which can suit perfectly to this situation. The feeling of your worries being washed away can be achieved if you focus on your senses. In order to improve this state, try closing your eyes.
2. Relaxing your body even further
After the relaxing bath, some people have the energy to do the things they like, and some people want to go even deeper. Many turn to sleeping, the body’s natural regenerating mechanism. It is ok, but today we’re here to reach the deeper levels of relaxation. To get there, a massage is the next step.
Since this is a guide for relaxing in your home, you’ll either order a masseuse to come to your house or get a massaging chair. If you are lucky enough to possess this wonderful chair, you just strap in and hit “play.” The speed, pace, and intensity are not universal, so you will need to experiment, and to see which mode suits you the best.
Another add-on for ambient and overall improvement is scented sticks. Those can be bought anywhere, and the choice of the type of scent is left to you. However, pine, lavender, and bergamot are good to start with. Their primal purpose is to enhance meditation and give you additional focus, but the purpose of relaxing is also notable.
3. Being creative
The next thing might be your favorite and possibly forgotten hobby. We all have that one thing we used to do daily, but we simply lack the time (willingly or unwillingly) for it. Whether that be calligraphy, maintaining your mini Zen garden, or playing an instrument, there is only one rule; do it.
Again, it is not the point of creating wonderful pieces of art; it is about you doing something that makes you happy. If you do not have any hobby, I recommend you to try painting. It is easy, and there are no rules or limitations. You do as you please, and quite often, being creative will make you feel better. Painting has a psychological effect of relaxation.
Research results published by the Society for Personality and Social Psychology are stating that people’s perspective can be changed if we practice hobbies on a daily basis. It might seem like a long-term goal, but you have to start somewhere, right?
4. Have a delicious meal
A perfect relaxation isn’t complete without a proper meal. Regarding the type of food you like and if you like to prepare it yourself, get your food ready and waiting. We all love pizza, of course, but as I said, take it a bit further.
Italian food is rather easy to prepare, and since it utilizes light ingredients such as pasta and chicken meat, it will not make you feel heavy after eating. One of my favorites is definitely Cauliflower Penne Puttanesca, a light, vegetarian pasta, which requires about 25 minutes to prepare.
Of course, this exquisite meal should be paired with the matching wine, and if you can obtain a bottle of Villa Bucci’s Riserva, Verdicchio dei Castelli from 2009, it will be simply put, perfect. Wine is a somewhat sensitive drink, so it should be cooled to exact temperature (around 15°C). Luckily, there are many wine coolers & fridges which can do this for you. As a good wine enthusiast, I’m sure you already have a cooler. If not, consider having one.
5. The end of the night
After a good meal, you can spend the rest of the evening as you like. Personally, I love to take another round of easy massage while watching a movie or a TV show. In general, avoid watching TV while eating, because you won’t enjoy it as much.
Also, a good book is a great suggestion, and whether that be something new, such as “The Wright Brothers” by David McCullough, or something more classic, like Shakespeare or Charles Dickens, the decision is yours. After reading, you can go to sleep, satisfied and happy; after all, you did something wonderful for yourself.
Spare some time for yourself every week
It is not as much about the bathing, the wine, and food, as it is about YOU doing something you are not doing every day. After an evening spent like this, you will finally see the world as it really is, beautiful, colored and sparkly.
But you did not change it, you simply swept away the heavy clouds of every day stress and troubles, and this enthusiasm is really contagious. The next thing you will want to do is to prepare a similar evening for your loving person, knowing how good it feels. Always have the time for yourself!
Featured photo credit: Annie Spratt via unsplash.com