Sometimes a proper day off of works seems far and few between. With constant email notifications and bottomless to-do lists, it can seem nearly impossible to find ways to recharge on your day off. Even when the weekend rolls around, it still can seem impossible to do anything fun without feeling guilty about not working ahead or completing an extra project. But to fully recharge for the upcoming work week and unwind from the previous, you need to delete all of your worries so you can solely take care of yourself, because honestly, you should be your top priority.
According to lifestyle site The Muse, it's best to leave all the distractions at the door and try to surround yourself with a quiet environment when trying to relax. It can be easy to get wrapped up in all the chaos, especially if you live in a busy city and are constantly on the go. But during your time off, do the complete opposite by embracing the silence so your mind can rest and not focus on anything. While it may feel inevitable that your crazy to-do list is never going to end, it's time to take charge of your days off so you can fully recharge once and for all. Below are 11 tips on how to unplug and relax during your days off.
1. Don't Check Your Email Right When You Wake Up
Don't start your day by going straight into work and answering stressful emails. During your day off, keep your phone out of your room so you can begin your day with a peaceful frame of mind. "This is your day. If someone needs to reach you badly enough, they can call. It's easy to get distracted on the Internet, then before you know it, the whole day is gone," says Life Coach Julie Holmes in an interview with Bustle over email.
2. Do Things That Will Nurture Your Soul
During your time off, it's vital for you to do something for yourself while you take time off to recharge your mind and soul. "Take a walk through nature. Meditate ([there are] lots of guided meditations on YouTube). Read a book. Learn something new. Focus only on doing things that feed your soul, whatever that is for you," says Holmes.
3. Slow Down Your Day
Rather than being stressed by trying to accomplish a billion errands, slow time down by enjoying the little moments. "Find time to slow down your pace and just be. We're human beings, not human doings. Try to eliminate stimulants like caffeine that day, so your mind and body are able to calm down and find a restful state. In this state, take out time to read quietly in an armchair or chaise, sip on some camomile tea, or draw a bath, light some candles and play soft music," says holistic wellness coach Pax Tandon in an interview with Bustle over email.
6. Surround Yourself In Nature
Take a drive far away from busy city life and enjoy nature with your loved ones, like going to the beach or taking a hike in a park. "If the weather permits, take a slow mindful walk in nature, paying particular attention to the movement of you legs, the sights, smells and sounds around you. Luxuriating in soft, slow moments like this are so deeply calming and restorative, they allow the batteries to recharge quickly and effectively," says Tandon.
7. Do Low-Stress Exercise
Instead of stressing your body out with a vigorous exercise routine, try a different approach by doing yoga or another type of mindful exercise. "If you are going to practice some form of physical activity (remembering that most forms are quite demanding and you want [to] recharge), try a restorative yoga class. Props are used to help the body open and stretch passively. You'll feel replenished and fluid," says Tandon
8. Refrain From Using Electronics
According to Forbes, using electronics can subconsciously induce stress. Instead, read a book, go to a concert, or dance with your friends. Try to engage in activities where you don't need technology so your mind can fully rest.
3. Revitalize Your Energy
"When we try to recharge, sometimes we like to think that just means that we get to lie on a beach sipping on something colorful. However, as wonderful as [those] moments may be, a way to recharge is to be in movement. One of the greatest mistakes that we do is that we are always moving and working for someone else," says founder of Performance Life Coaching Stephanie Holland in an interview with Bustle over email. "This could be taking time to meditate but it could also be working in our garden. We get energy from the life around us when we remember to take a moment to open up for ourselves." Because you're mostly doing work for other people during the week, make sure you're scheduling me time while you're taking days off.
9. Don't Do Any Work
According to Fast Company, while some successful people do work on the weekends, they make sure to involve a certain amount of time where they don't do anything. During your time off, try not to do work for a minimum of 24 hours, so you can replenish your mind and well-being.
10. Rekindle Relationships
Your time off should be about what makes you happy, and usually, friends are a great way to revitalize those happy hormones. According to INC., your day off is the perfect time to rekindle relationships that might've been ignored during the week. Just by spending time with a loved one can help you feel more relaxed and ready to go for work the next day.
10. Focus On Your Mind
Has your brain been feeling burnt out lately? Find new ways to peacefully engage with your mind so you can revitalize it before the work week starts. "Get mindful. One of the most effective ways to recharge is to sit in meditation and focus the mind to give it rest. Allow the body to become still, notice but don't attach to thoughts and try to resist the urge to move or adjust. Simply become very aware. It's amazing how rested you'll feel with this practice — it's more energizing for the mind than a 20-minute power nap," says Tandon.
11. Eat Healthy
While that ice cream cone sounds amazing, if you're feeling anxious and stressed it's probably a better idea to consider eating foods that will wholly replenish your body and mind, instead of possibly making you more tired and irritable. According to a LinkedIn article, award-winning business leadership coach David B. Nast said, "Sugar includes alcohol. You may think a glass of wine will help you relax, but if you drink within three hours of falling asleep, the insulin response in your bloodstream will cause a rebound effect about six hours later. In other words, if you have ice cream (or vodka) at 9 p.m. and go to bed at 11 p.m., right around 3 a.m. you are more likely to wake up in response to the sugar."
Whether you're off for a three-day weekend or just enjoying a few hours to yourself, use these tips so you can have the best stress-free day ever.