Affordable Ways To Relax On National Relaxation Day
It’s National Relaxation Day! Don’t you wish every day were this day?
If your life is always go, go, go, GO…! Then you aren’t really stopping to enjoy, well, life. Perhaps it’s a North American thing but, many of us are conditioned to believe that we should always attempt to do more. What if you retrained your mind to think, “I should find ways to do less each day?” That would be something. It’s so important to relax a little every day. It’s good for your blood pressure. It’s good for your gut. It’s good for your muscles. And you know what? It’s good for your relationships because you’re a cranky little woman when you don’t take time to relax.
“The irony is that what’s causing our stress–the pace of life and the never-ending demands–are the very things that keep us from doing something about it,” Joe Magnacca, CEO of Massage Envy, said. “We’re busy taking care of business, and for many of us, self-care is one of the first things that come off our list. I think that’s a big mistake and comes with a heavy cost, which is why I dedicate time every day, to taking care of myself no matter what’s going on. That might be a massage, but it can also be a run outdoors or a walk on the beach or just talking to my kids. The point is to make it a daily habit.”
Here are a handful of free and affordable ways to do just that.
Make time to sleep a lot
Even if you cannot afford to pay for a relaxing experience, you can find time to sleep more. Pick a night when you say no to evening or early morning activities and just give yourself 11 hours to be in that bed of yours.
A $ 20-foot massage
Maybe those pricey massages at hotel spas aren’t in the budget but, there are plenty of smaller places offering $ 20-foot massages. And since your feet contain nerves that are connected to so many parts of your body, getting them massaged can make a huge difference.
Meditation can improve so many parts of your life, from your career to your eating decisions, to your relationship. Just five minutes of mindful meditation can slow your heart rate and drive worries away. As Professional Golfer Hailey Ostrom who’s a Massage Envy Ambassador put it, sometimes you need to just take time to breathe. “Breathing seems obvious but sometimes when you’re stressed your body forgets to breathe normally. Taking a second to do some deep breathing naturally relaxes your muscles and in turn, your mind.”
Get into nature
The sights, sounds, and smells that come with being in nature are all deeply relaxing. Remember that people haven’t really been surrounded by cement for that long, in the grand scheme of things. We’re used to being around green grass and earth.
Laugh your *ss off
Laughing quickly decreases the level of stress hormones surging through your body. It also boosts endorphin release and lowers blood pressure, making it an all-around great way to de-stress.
Take a bath
Baths offer so many wonderful perks, and one of them is relaxation. The sound of water, combined with the warm temperature and cocoon-like shape of the tub all make us feel safe and at ease.
Go in a pool
Have you ever noticed how refreshed you feel every time you take a dip in a pool? And if you take the time to float on your back, you’ll pop up feeling super relaxed. Just letting something else support your body weight for a while has a way of putting your mind at ease.
If getting organized is something that calms you down, then finally put aside a few hours to do it. You know you have a long list of things you’ve been meaning to donate, store, clean, and de-clutter.
Be with an animal
If you have a pet, take him to the park, and get in some good snuggle time at home. Just watching animals romp around, so happy and care-free, brings out the child in all of us. And petting an animal can lower your blood pressure.
Attend a recital
If you can’t afford to go to a professional concert, don’t forget about the music academies, filled with highly talented musicians who just haven’t broken through yet. Their recitals are typically free.
Read a favorite childhood book
Diving back into a book you loved as a child or teen will also help you dive back into your mindset back then. Life was simpler. Life was full of possibilities.
When you garden, you get the meditative effect of focusing on a specific, detailed task. You also get to be in nature. And, you may get some healthy veggies out of it.
Finally print photos
Finally take the time to print out all of those photos of those wonderful memories on your phone. Go to a shop like Ross, Marshalls, or TJ Maxx where you can find lovely, affordable albums. Sift through your printed photos and make those albums.
Listen to the Bossa Nova station
Have you ever played this in Pandora? It’s very relaxing. It’s like a sail boat meets elevator music meets tropical vacation vibes.
Do something kind
A lot of our angst can come from the worry that we aren’t contributing much on this earth. So, do something kind. Run an errand for an elderly person in your building. Bring some food to your new, busy mom friend.