Everyone has their own way of relaxing. For some, that may mean staying up to date with their favorite musical artist or sports team. For others, it might be browsing through the latest special offers online casinos to discover the latest slot machine games, blackjack or roulette. Relaxing can also involve watching the latest blockbuster movie, whether it’s live streaming at home or going to the movies with friends. Relaxation can also mean napping, cooking, or jogging.
However a person chooses to unwind, it is important that they prioritize downtime. People who work often and constantly experience high levels of stress may experience physical symptoms such as headaches or restlessness, as well as mood changes, such as feeling overwhelmed or irritable.
Seen in this light, prioritizing relaxation and entertainment is essential to our overall happiness, even if it takes a little longer to fit into a busy schedule. Even so, those in need of a little quality pleasure, in daily doses or longer periods of time, need not revise their lives. By sticking to a few of the points below, even the most stressed professionals can invite more relaxation into their lives.
A base of pleasure: simplicity
As mentioned above, there is no need to completely rearrange a routine in order to have more time for hobbies. However, one way to make room for more downtime is to simply observe your current schedule. Are you exceeding your mental or physical abilities? And how often?
The solutions could be deceptively simple. Keeping a clean living and working space is a way to reduce stress and invite more peace into everyday life. Waking up 10 minutes earlier can give you time to stop and smell the flowers on your way to work, literally or figuratively.
To find areas of your life that can be simplified, simply write down your routine and then count the aspects that cause you the most stress. From there, a few simple solutions should appear. For example, podcasts are a way to add a little more entertainment to a daily routine. Whether it’s a comedy podcast or a familiar talk show, passive listening to podcasts can always lift your spirits.
Physical activity releases endorphins in the body, known as the happiness hormone. For this reason, many health professionals and therapists recommend getting active to increase happiness. Couch potatoes are not afraid. Relaxation doesn’t call for a trip to the Pilates studio.
In the context of leisure, being active is about moving the body. This could mean a walk in the park to spend time in nature or even have a picnic in the park. UC Berkeley researchers uncover new insights into nature’s ability to reduce stress and boost creativity.
Getting more active can also mean trying a new sport, like rollerblading or kayaking. After all, relaxation should also be fun. But that doesn’t have to involve nature. Simply going to a mall for a walk with a few friends is a fun way to get moving, as are other activities like visiting an amusement park or even a haunted house.
Always look for humor
It’s hard to get out of a bad moon when tensions are high. A simple way to invite more balance and peace into our lives is to always look for a fun and entertaining angle at least, when possible. Recently, researchers at James Cook University found that humor can offset negative thought patterns.
So what does it really look like, especially to those born without a natural sense of humor? This means keeping reminders of things that make them laugh and feel good. For example, that might mean putting an automotive hula doll on their car’s dashboard just to encourage a few more smiles during their morning commute.
It could also be as simple as changing a ringtone to an uplifting or joyful song. More prosaically, it could literally mean buying tickets to a comedy show. Remember that laughter, like physical activity, also releases endorphins in the brain.
trust the music
Unpleasant and abrasive sounds, from nails on a blackboard to car horns, can lead to sensory overload and a very unpleasant experience. Seen in this light, it’s obvious that sound has a huge effect on mood, so why not exploit it?
Connect regularly to relaxing music is a way to create a spirit of relaxation around any activity. Those facing long workdays can choose to listen to soothing music with low BPMs during their morning commute or during their lunch break. Conversely, music can be used to create a soothing atmosphere at home after work.
Those who find it hard to relax after a long day can also use music to help them sleep at night, or even wake up in the morning. The same goes for uplifting the mood and adding more excitement to life. Higher BPMs are associated with dancing and faster movement, so adding a bit of upbeat music can add a bit of fun to any activity.
Maintain social ties
Prioritizing time with friends and family is one of the best ways to stay relaxed. In 2019, researchers at the University of Notre Dame correlated stress levels to the number of incoming and outgoing phone calls. The more social engagement, the less stress a participant reported.
Some might find this information surprising. After all, what about introverts, who can feel even more stress when faced with extra social time? In reality, maintaining social connections may not be just about spending time in person or on the phone with loved ones. In fact, it can be as simple as interacting with friends through apps like Wordle or playing an online casino game like slots together.
Maintaining our social network is also important because it gives us a sense of community. When people feel they have a strong circle of supporters who can help them overcome life’s obstacles, big or small, they are less likely to feel stressed by difficult situations. In other words, knowing that you have a friend to support you makes dealing with life’s problems a little easier.
Few people would consider daydreaming a relaxation technique or a way to add a little more entertainment. But in reality, envisioning an ideal future can help us feel that anything is possible. And by building these scenarios through visualization, we prepare our minds to achieve new goals.
If relaxation is a goal for you, then simply spending time imagining a more peaceful and balanced way of life is a big step forward. Or if the goal is to add more fun, imagining a new adventure might also do the trick. Remember to keep it simple and make small, incremental changes because they’re more likely to last and less likely to add more stress to your life.