The Best Ways to Decompress After Work
Work can be stressful. In fact, 43% of workers say their jobs have a negative effect on their stress levels. To make matters worse, remote working blurs the line between your home life and work life. It’s hard to leave work stress behind when your living room is your office. Making a conscious effort to relax after work can help. Here are eight simple ways to decompress after work.
8 Simple Ways to Decompress After Work
The average adult now spends more than 13 hours per day looking at screens. Officer workers spend 21-25 hours per week in front of screens.
It may be tempting to scroll mindlessly on your phone after work, but that can make it difficult to relax and unwind. Couple that with endless social media posts, messages from friends, and news updates, and you have an information overload disaster.
If you want to decompress after work, try disconnecting for a few hours, or even one hour. Turn off your phone and forget about the world for a while.
It’s okay to leave those emails until the morning. Those text messages can also wait. Just take a breather for a while, and maybe try some of the other activities on our list while you’re disconnected.
2. Get Crafty
Do something creative that you enjoy, whether it’s writing, painting, woodworking, drawing, crocheting, making jewelry, embroidery, or whatever brings you some joy. Of course, playing music or dancing counts, too.
Research shows that enjoyable leisure activities help reduce blood pressure and cortisol levels. They’re also associated with a lower body mass index and total waist circumference. So, getting crafty can not only help you decompress but may also help with weight management.
Meditation is one of the simplest things you can do to decompress after work. Studies have shown that practicing mindfulness meditation regularly can help increase gray matter in the hippocampus. In addition, the hippocampus helps regulate cortisol levels and your emotions.
In other words, meditation can help you better cope with stress and keep your emotions in check.
After work is the perfect time to meditate. You’re shifting gears from a busy workday to a relaxing evening. Giving your mind that space to refocus and recharge will allow you to enjoy your evening without worrying about the stresses of the workday.
The concept of meditation is simple, but practicing it can be challenging. Many of us have a hard time sitting still and being with our thoughts for more than just a few minutes. That's okay. Start with just a few minutes, and work your way from there.
If you’re not sure how to get started, here are some great guided meditations to get you on the right track.
4. Try Aromatherapy
The scent is a powerful thing. It can stir up old memories. It can make you feel energized. Or it can make you feel more relaxed. If you have a diffuser and some essential oils, you can use aromatherapy to decompress after work.
Lavender essential oil can be especially effective at easing anxiety and cortisol levels. You can also try bergamot, peppermint, rose, ylang-ylang, or neroli essential oils for stress relief.
5. Use Healing Crystals
Many crystals have calming and ground effects that can help you decompress and relax after a stressful day.
Use them in your meditation practice, or simply place them in your bedroom or living room to help combat feelings of stress. Set an intention on the crystal while you hold it in the palm of your hand.
Some of the best crystals for stress and healing are:
- Citrine: Combats negative energy and helps reduce stress.
- Clear quartz: Helps promote focus, positivity, and balance.
- Amethyst: Calms mind chatter and has protective and healing properties.
- Rhodonite: Suppresses anxiety while bringing order to your space.
Don’t forget to recharge your stone in the sun or during a full moon. It’s also a good idea to give them a good salt bath from time to time to wash away any negative energy that it may have picked up.
6. Go On A Cleaning Spree
If you’re feeling stressed after work, go on a cleaning and organizing spree when you get home. Many people find that cleaning can be meditative because it keeps you focused and in the present moment.
But there’s also another great reason to clean when you’re feeling stressed – it brings order to your home. Clearing away the clutter and organizing your space can help you feel more at ease when you’re at home.
While you’re cleaning, toss or donate anything that you don’t want or need. Getting rid of things that no longer serve you can be very therapeutic and may help you release the stress you bring home from work.
7. Talk to a Friend
When you’re feeling stressed or overwhelmed after work, try talking to a friend or meeting up for a coffee. Spending some quality time with friends can make all the difference in your mood, but talking about what’s stressing you out can also help you process and release that stress.
Friends can remind you that it’s time to refocus your energy or even give you advice on how to handle a stressful situation.
8. Turn Your Home into an Oasis
If you’re like most people, you probably spend a lot of your non-work time at home during the week. Make it a place you want to be – a respite from the stresses of the world.
If your home is chaotic and makes you feel anxious, you won’t be able to decompress after work.
How can you turn your home into a haven from stress:
- Get rid of the clutter
- Surround yourself with things that you love
- Add greenery
- Indulge your senses
- Bring in cozy throw blankets to boost the comfort level
- Light candles
- Add soft lighting
Creating a relaxing, inviting and calm space can help you relax and de-stress at the end of the workday.
Work can be stressful, but that doesn’t mean that you have to take that stress home with you. Instead, use these eight simple tips to help decompress after work and head into each day feeling refreshed and recharged.
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