A Type A’s Guide to Relaxation: National Relaxation Day

A Type A’s Guide to Relaxation

A full calendar is a happy calendar! I tend to be one of those people who always wants to fill up my time. If I see a spare hour in my schedule, I am thinking about what I could get done in that time. But, recently I have been trying to get away from that and focus my attention on relaxation. Often I would feel so guilty for wanting to relax and take some time for myself. It hasn’t been easy but I’ve been slowly building on my self care! Being National Relaxation Day, I felt like I could share my newfound love for relaxing. Here are a few things that I now do to relax (that I didn’t do a few months ago):

  1. Run. I have hated running my whole life. But now I have a goal to run a mile in under ten minutes. Running has become relaxing for me. I really enjoy it because it helps me clear my mind after a long day at work. Yes, a lot of times I have to force myself to run, but it is worth it in the end and the feeling that comes after is so amazing!

  2.  Go to bed early. 8pm is not too early.

  3.  Take baths. I took baths when I was a kid. Then everywhere I moved happened to only have stand-alone showers. When I moved in with my husband, I took advantage of the nice big tub. A long soak, anytime of day, is glorious! I’ll add in himalayan salt, orange oil, and even homemade bubble bath when I am feeling fancy. A glass of sparkling grape juice (a non-drinker’s champagne) once in awhile helps too!

  4.  Play Sims. Well, rather build houses in Sims.

  5.  Leave work at work. This sounds simple, but it is so, so hard. I take time every day to say, “MadeUpName, you are home, now it is time to enjoy being at home. Stop thinking about work and enjoy the time you have here and now.” I try to be mindful about the stress that I bring home from work. There is ABSOLUTELY no work email on my phone. If I am needed in an emergency, they will call. There is no reason for me to worry about work until the next workday. This increases the relaxation factor by tenfold for my days off!

  6.  Sing songs. I have a weakness for old country music. Dolly Parton, Kenny Rogers, Randy Travis, Willie Nelson, Hank Williams, Chris LeDoux, Tanya Tucker, you name it, I love it. These are the songs I grew up on, so I know every word by heart. By the way, you should check out Grandpa by The Judds if you’ve never heard it. It is my go-to de-stressing song.

  7.  Do things now. Anything that I can do as soon as possible will be done. I don’t want to have to worry about something for weeks. I do it now. No procrastination, no excuses. Do it now so you don’t worry about it later. Plus, those little breaks day-to-day feel so much better when I don’t have to use them to finish last-minute projects.

  8.  Skip cooking dinner. Sometimes I don’t feel like cooking. So, it’s pizza night. Less stress for me, more pizza for by belly!

  9.  Write lists like this. Sometimes we need a reminder of what we can do when we are stressed. My mind doesn’t quite function perfectly in those high-stress situations, so seeing a list is super helpful in finding something to help me relax.

So, that’s my list. A few things I do to relax. It seems crazy to me that I could even come up with ten, because a year ago I had so few ways to relax! I hope this encourages those of you who struggle with relaxation to give it another shot. This is National Relaxation Day for goodness sakes! Find your personal self-care, coping strategies, relaxation protocols…whatever you call them…find them and make a list! Use them when you are stressed. Use them when you are not stressed. Just take some time to relax, please. And don’t forget to add to the list as you go along. Mine is still growing and I can’t wait to see what it looks like in another six months.

Bonus:

10. Watch Bob Ross. He’s amazing.

 

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