It might be too early to begin thinking about new year resolutions but I have been. This year, my two resolutions were to de-stress and travel more. Unfortunately, because I changed my career path so suddenly, there wasn’t a lot of time to work on either. I took my birthday in Paris and I’m off to Copenhagen for a week this month but stress? There was lots of it! I’ve done some experimenting and I’ve decided to clarify how I’m going to combat stress from now on.
De-stress by disconnect
I’m kicking the guilty feeling I get when I buy a bunch of books. Reading is one of the only activities I do that completely disconnects me. I work online and all my devices are in a constant flurry of notifications and emails and it’s really hard to switch off. Especially living in a world full of bad news, I need my disconnected time to process a normal amount of information and not feel overwhelmed. Moving forward, I want to make more time to read and really invest in stories worth reading to de-stress and I think you should too!
Invest in a hot stone deep tissue massage
I’ve had a lot of pain and issues with my shoulders lately. The combination of working long hours at a desk, being in a state of stress regularly and sleeping on cheap pillows have had damaging effects. It got to a point where I couldn’t look over my left shoulder and even though it made me nervous, I booked a deep tissue massage with hot stones. I made the process as easy as possible by booking somewhere easy to get to and close to home, in Covent Garden.
The whole experience kicked off with the masseuse climbing on top of me and walking on her hands up and down my back! She really worked my shoulders to as much pain as I could stand and even though I suffered the mini muscle tears for a few days (totally normal, don’t worry), they’ve finally healed and I feel so much better. In fact, just laying with my eyes closed for half an hour was great to de-stress! Can we make this a monthly thing? I’m going to try!
Invest time and energy into passion projects
I think it’s important to talk about how your hobbies, if productive, are not a waste of time. When I’m not working and I’m doing something else that doesn’t pay the bills, I get anxious if I do it too long. But I’m a firm believer that creative passion projects make me a better and a happier person. To de-stress, it’s important to escape your stressors and so making time to do the things you love is healthy. Schedule an hour a day or a few hours a week to whatever creative thing makes you happy, be it blogging, learning a new skill, painting, anything that involves making something!
Let’s make the rest of this year a really calm and relaxed time!
If you have any suggestions or experiences of how you successfully de-stress leave them in the comments below!
Photo by Dominika Lugin