I’m sure you’ve had the experience of just wanting to crash and binge-watch Netflix after a long day of work. Between stressful jobs, difficult colleagues, and a never-ending to-do list, our workdays are not always easy and we all need ways to de-stress after work. Fortunately, when you have good self-care ideas, a good routine or go-to habits for your evening to relax and rejuvenate yourself, you’ll find that you can wake up the next day refreshed and ready to go.
Here are 5 ways to de-stress after a long day of work.
Read for Fun
You probably do lots of reading throughout the workday from emails, reports, etc. But, most of it is probably not what you would choose to read for fun. Getting into the habit of reading in the evening can be so relaxing and is a good alternative to scrolling through social media. In fact, this is definitely one of my favorite forms of self-care after work. If you aren’t sure what to read, Goodreads is a helpful website for book lovers where you can see what your friends are reading, provide reviews, or look up books to read in the future. Another way to find great book recommendations is to check out the hashtag #bookstagram on Instagram. You might also consider tracking what you read with a reading planner.
Take Up an Old Hobby
If you’re wondering how to get go of work stress, taking up an old hobby is a great idea. Think about what you liked to do as a child. Did you play an instrument? Or participate in a sport or club? Maybe there was something you always wanted to try like learning a language but just never got around to it. While it might feel like you don’t have the time, even practicing for a few minutes a day or an hour a week can be a fun way to switch up your routine. And if you need additional accountability, see if you can find something that you can do with your partner or a friend or family member.
Try a Few Minutes of Yoga or Other Exercise
I know that after a stressful day, exercise is probably the last thing you feel like doing, I totally get it. But, as Adriene from “Yoga with Adrienne” always says, “A little goes a long way.” Whether it’s doing a 5-10 minute video on YouTube or just doing a few stretches before climbing into bed, exercise is truly one of the best stress relievers. And once you can get over the resistance of starting, you know that you’ll feel great after you’ve done it. To make this a habit, you could also try a 30-day challenge and see how it goes. If you often start out with good intentions to exercise but struggle to follow through (hand raised) try writing out exactly what you’ll do in your health and wellness planner. Having a plan and actually writing it down can make a huge difference.
Write Down Your Frustrations or Feelings
Bottling up your thoughts and stress is never a good idea. Even if you don’t consider yourself a writer, taking a few minutes after work or before bed to get everything out of your mind can be helpful. Often on nights where I’m having a hard time sleeping, it’s because I am doing too much thinking and not enough relaxing. Whether it’s digital or paper, take some time to just free-write. This might include things that are bothering you, goals you want to accomplish, or lists of things that need to get done. Afterward, you’ll likely feel a sense of relief, as though a huge weight has been lifted from your shoulders. Also, when you’re going through a hard time, it can be helpful to read through past journal entries to remind yourself of how far you’ve come and of previous obstacles that you’ve gotten through in the past.
Up Your Skincare Game
Is there anything better than putting on pajamas, taking off your makeup, and doing your skincare after a long day? When you’re stressed and tired it’s easy to neglect things like skincare, even when you know that it’s good for you. I find that having a simple skincare routine that I can stick to daily makes all the difference. For me, this looks like washing my face, applying toner, using a serum, and ending with a moisturizer. Take the time to find products that you really love and that make your skin look and feel its best. There’s nothing better than waking up with fresh, glowy skin!
I find that even on days when I’m feeling lazy and tired, it’s still good to have a general plan for the evening. In the afternoon, I like to take a minute or two just to jot down the plan for the evening. This usually starts with dinner and watching a show. Then, I’ll write down anything else that needs to be done like doing yoga, taking a shower, skincare routine, and reading. By having a plan in place, I find that this makes it less likely to watch 3 or 4 hours of TV. While a Netflix binge from time to time isn’t terrible, doing it daily won’t help you reach your dreams or be the best version of yourself.