Everyone needs a mental and physical reset at the start of each week. The perfect way to do so is taking advantage of the wonderful things you can do on your days off to de-stress and get ready for the days ahead of you! Here are some tips to help you have a stress-free day off!
Tip #1: Get 80% of household chores done before your day off. Many people use their days off to take care of things around the house that they can’t accomplish during the week. This is not a bad thing, but the busier your mind is, the more likely you are to be stressed. The best advice I have for this is be sure to set aside ten minutes every day to tidy things up. It cuts down the amount of time you have to clean which gives you more time to enjoy your day off.
Tip #2: Do not answer any work calls or emails. Today, a lot of people work remotely, which can make it hard to separate home life and work life. When I was working from home, I made a point of making sure that I did not answer my work phone or emails before 9am and after 4pm Monday through Friday. Now, being an event manager, I needed to answer emails and calls on Saturdays as well because those are the days I give most tours of the venue. However, I never answered a call or email on a Sunday because it is the one day where I will not work unless I have an event scheduled. It is a day where I focus on improving my relationship with God as well as improving myself. It is important that on your day off, you focus on what you need first. It’s just like airplane safety: you need to help yourself before you can help others!
Tip #3: Get ready for the day in a way that makes you feel good but relaxed. I’m not going to lie, sometimes wearing sweat pants and a messy bun all day is the best feeling. However, it also makes me feel like not doing anything productive during the day. Of course, everyone needs a lazy day, but for my days off where I still want to get things accomplished and not be in front of my tv all day, I can never go wrong with a subtle hair and makeup look with a pair of jeans and a t-shirt. It helps me wake up and prepare for what the day has in store for me.
Tip #4: Make meals simple. If you’re like me, you love to cook. Cooking is something that, most of the time, relaxes me. But there are some days where making a meal for myself or for my entire family can be a bit stressful. Honestly, I don’t like to cook when I’m stressed. So, what’s my solution? Making meals simple! My favorite meal to make to take the stress away is a charcuterie board. It’s easy, you can mix and match anything you want, and it goes great with a glass of red wine! The best part is, you don’t necessarily need to be a cheese-lover to make an amazing charcuterie board: there are plenty of different vegetarian and vegans options as well as dessert boards! The options are endless!
Tip #5: Find a hobby that relaxes you. This can be anything! For a while, I took up knitting, which was a blast! But, I would tend to sit in front of the tv while doing it, which is something that I was personally trying to cut down on. So, I went on a search to find something that would need my full focus. Lo and behold, candle-making fell into my lap! Both the process and the finished product are so soothing. Originally, I was going to sell candles to make a little extra money, but then I realized that the job I had did not allow a lot of time for that, so I ended up making them for my own pleasure. The best part is that they don’t pollute the air and are made from organic ingredients!
Tip #6: Set aside time for some reading. This tip is mainly to help get you away from the tv, which can be difficult when you are exhausted from your week. It is so important to read, especially now when technology is constantly changing. Reading improves your memory and empathy, makes us feel more positive, reduces the chances of developing Alzheimers later in life, and, you guessed it, reduces stress! Whether it be your favorite genre or a self-help book, try to at least get 15 minutes of reading in your day.
Tip #7: Set aside time for self care. This is a big one. During the week, a lot of people don’t set aside time for self-care, myself included. You definitely need to take advantage of your day off by treating yourself a bit, whether that is retail therapy, taking a long bath, or putting on a face mask: there really is no limit to what you can do! Do at least one thing that focuses on caring about yourself.
Tip #8: Set aside time for meditation. This is another big one. Many people have their opinions about meditation and how it should be done. My personal view is that meditation was Gods first and that it is about filling your mind with with His truth, focusing on being still in His presence, and listening to what He has to say. When I sit and take time to meditate on His word, I feel so much better about the things that I have to face because it keeps me grounded. There is no better way to reduce your stress!
Tip #9: Stretch. Exercise is important; It improves health, endurance, and helps to reduce stress. But, if on your day off you don’t want to do a full workout, stretching is the best alternative. When you stretch, your muscles lengthen, improving the range of motion in your joints and make you more flexible. It is also a means to visit where your body is physically stressed. When you stretch or do yoga before bed, it lessens your mental stimulation which in turn helps you sleep better.
Tip #10: Read your Bible and spending time in prayer. I know that this does not relate to everyone reading, but it has worked for me! Not only do I improve my knowledge and my relationship with Christ, I also find relief and rest in His word. Recently, my church did a series on anxiety. Through it, my eyes were opened to the stress and anxieties in my life as well as different key verses to help overcome them. There is no stress, no anxiety, no burden that is too heavy for my God. Anytime that I am overcome with stress, I turn to Him. There is no greater stress relief than finding rest in God.
Here’s to a happy, stress-free day off!