6 of the Best Ways to Celebrate National Relaxation Day
Have you been in the mood to have another holiday? Look no further — August 15 is National Relaxation Day! Take this Saturday to unwind and prioritze your personal well-being. If you can, take this time to set aside anything that’s stressing you out.
If you’ve read our last blog post, you’ll see that consistently getting great sleep leads to plenty of useful health benefits that’ll seriously elevate your daily life. Relaxation also gives you a boost by reducing stress both instantly and afterwards, so it’s definitely something to make time for.
But what does relaxing mean to you? It doesn’t just have to be laying on the couch, eating your favorite comfort foods, and binging a Netflix show! There are many ways to relax your way to better health.
Here are some of our National Relaxation Day ideas to help ease stress and anxiety. If you don’t think you have time to relax, some of these don’t require very much time at all!
Indulge in Stress-Relieving Foods
The nutrients in a lot of foods can help ease the tension from your life’s demands. Brazil nuts, dark chocolate, and yogurt all contain flavonoids, bacteria, or antioxidants that can help lower your anxiety. Wash down these delicious foods with green tea or a caffeine-free turmeric latte to drink your way to destressing.
Spend Some Time in Nature
Check out a not-so-strenuous hiking trail (ideally with a waterfall), go for a stroll on the beach, or stroll around a garden. Studies show that spending time in nature helps to relieve stress. Don’t feel like moving? You don’t have to! “Spending time” can just be sitting down and admiring the earthy scenery, no hiking needed.
The calming effects of nature totally make sense — nature is usually pretty serene compared to a bustling, busy, loud urban city. Plants also produce oxygen, which will literally help you breathe more easily.
Play Some (Slow) Classical Music
Classical music is usually elegant and not overtly angry or intense. Even if it’s not your usual music taste, check it out. Studies show that listening to classical music can lower your heart rate, blood pressure, and stress hormones.
Of course, classical music is a broad term and isn’t always going to be calming, so choose wisely. Pick a collection of songs that evoke calm scenery in your head, such as a quiet elevator ride or a classy dinner at a fancy restaurant. If you have to do any work, playing classical music in the background can help ease any tension that may arise.
Here’s another super affordable way to help relax that you can do whether you’re going through your to-do list or just sitting back enjoying your favorite YouTube videos. Regardless of flavor, chewing gum can lower cortisol, which is the stress-inducing hormone.
In clinical experiments, the groups who chewed gum over the course of 14 days ended up with lower anxiety than the groups who didn’t. Another study showed that participants who chewed gum reacted to annoying sounds in less stressful ways.
There’s a ton of data out there showing how relaxing meditation can be. Meditation can help increase your focus, reduce stress, and help you sleep better. If you’re not sure how to meditate beyond just breathing in and out, there are quite a few apps that can guide you. There are numerous benefits of meditation, including lowered aggression and heightened compassion and mindfulness. In the long run, the effects can lead to better sleep, weight loss, and improved interpersonal relationships.
Wrap It All up With a Great Night’s Sleep
To reiterate the point of our last blog post, getting a great night’s sleep leads to immediate benefits the day after, most notably improved focus, alertness, and overall mood. All these will set a more solid foundation for getting a little relaxation in your daily life.
To help you get to sleep on time, don’t have any screens on right before bedtime! That means no TVs, phones, or computers should be in use. Try to end the night by reading a book instead.
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National Relaxation Day is a reminder to us all that no matter how crazy life can get, it’s important to take some time for yourself every once in a while. Slow down, de-stress, and get the good night’s rest you deserve! You’ll find you’ll be happier, healthier, and more energized when you take some time to relax.