7 simple ways to unwind and take time for yourself

This month I will be sharing with you 7 ways that help me restore the balance in my life when my days become too overwhelming.

February was not an easy month. Especially now when it’s been almost a whole year of a world pandemic and home isolation. I don’t know about you but I tend to lose my patience and inspiration at times. 

I hope that this article will give you some quick, simple and practical ideas about how to bring some more calmness and relaxation in your life.

#1 Read a book

For me personally that would be any personal development literature – from ancient mindfulness practices, to practical “how to” books, literature for young parents, business professionals. Basically anything that would bring in a little inspiration and wisdom in my daily routine. 

Reading is probably the first thing I would do if I would feel the need to slow down and ground. That’s why I make sure I always have a book with me, no matter where I go and for how long I will be gone.

#2 Write

Besides my monthly articles I sometimes write just for the sake of writing. I have a Google doc called “Journal 2021” and I go to this document every time I feel like I need to get something out of my system. 

There is no structure, no target, no expectations. Simply writing what’s going on in my life at that moment in time and how I feel about it. I have started this practice in 2016  and it’s really interesting to look back and read some of my old journals and remember how I have felt back then. 

You should give it a try some time, it can be very liberating.

#3 Return to meditation

I wish I could say I have incorporated meditation in my daily routine but unfortunately I have not.

I discovered the power of yoga and meditation about 15 years ago, a time when yoga and meditation were not so popular. At least not in Europe. 

Nowadays meditation and yoga opportunities are all around us – from Youtube guided meditations, websites and mobile meditation apps such as Headspace to even a series which I recently discovered on Netflix: Headspace: Guide to meditation. If you haven’t seen it yet I strongly recommend you to start and/or finish your day with an episode of mindfulness.

Returning to meditation always helps me take a step back, look at what’s happening from a distance and return to a place of peace and calmness.

#4 Physical Exercise

I used to go to the gym 3-4 times per week. During the current circumstances my house has become my gym and my yoga mat has become my best friend.

My absolute favorite Youtube yoga channel is Yoga with Adriene. Adriene has countless free videos for any imbalance or discomfort you may feel. She is amazing and I cannot express my admiration for the community she has built and the impact she is having on so many lives.

When I have more energy and desire for a more active workout I pick up anything suitable on Youtube. The ones below are amongst my most favorite ones:

#5 Isolation

When work and family responsibilities and expectations become too overwhelming I tend to look for ways to self-isolate. Whether that would be in a separate room, taking a walk in the park, going to the beach, being alone helps me remind myself of what is important to me and to recharge my batteries.

#6 Meet/Call a friend 

When I feel lonely or something exciting is happening in my life I often feel the need to talk about it. Talking to a friend is a great way to share what’s happening in my life but also to find out what’s happening with my friends. While listening to their achievements or challenges I get distracted from whatever may be causing me anxiety. As the saying goes “Pain shared is pain lessened.

#7 Plan a fun or relaxing activity 

I love going to the SPA, sauna, pool, jacuzzi. You name it! When we are on holiday I don’t miss the opportunity to book a massage and enjoy feeling taken care of. 

These relaxing areas have an immediate healing effect and I cannot wait to do this again!

What’s in it for you?

If you are experiencing a busy and overwhelming period right now, I hope the above simple ideas can help you bring some positive change in your daily routine.

You may say that there is nothing groundbreaking I am sharing with you. You are absolutely right! 

The above ideas are very basic and you don’t need much time, money or organization to initiate any of these activities. But as we know the simplest things in life are sometimes the hardest to achieve.

I wish I could say I am practicing what I am preaching on a daily basis. In fact, what I often end up doing is living my life in a “sprint mode” until my body and mind stop functioning. It’s usually then when I get reminded that I need to restore the balance. Until the next time this happens. 

Please know that I am always up for more ideas and inspiration, so feel free to share with me and the rest of the community your ways of unwinding and breaking the routine.

How does your list of 7 ways to unwind look like?

When was the last time you took time for yourself? 

Do you manage to do this on a regular basis?

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