Don’t get me wrong. I love to be busy. I am a GO, GO, GO, GET STUFF DONE! Kinda person in my day to day life, but there are days where I want to do nothing, or at least relax and not worry about having somewhere to be or something to do constantly. It has taken me a little while to perfect the art of “doing nothing” but now that I have a few tried and true things I like to do to give myself downtime, I look forward to that hour (or less!) to myself.
While I cannot relate to those working mamas out there, I like to think I have a fairly busy life. We are almost always doing something on the weekend, and work takes up a huge portion of our time during the week and even after hours. For me, taking time to unwind in the evening is crucial for my own mental health and wellbeing. Similarly, I like to wake up early in the morning to spend time by myself running and exercising to ensure I have a healthy start to the morning.
Here are a few ways I like to enjoy my downtime:
– Reading. Reading is an excellent want to not only learn, but to get lost in a story and escape from the everyday world. Whether you are a Harry Potter lover or like self-love type of books (I enjoy both!), sitting down with a book and a cup of tea can be so relaxing. You may just end up lying in bed with the book over your face if you get too comfy!
– Essential oils. Okay, so I know not everyone is into essential oils, but hear me out. Essential oils have so many therapeutic properties, and diffusing some lemon and grapefruit in the morning can be energizing, or peppermint and lavender in the evening can be soothing. There are tons of combinations you can play with, so test out a few to see what calls to you!
– Exercise. If you know me at all, you know I am an exercise junkie. Specifically a cardio junkie as running is my #1 form of exercise. However, sometimes in the evening a gentle yoga sequence can be just what you need. Exercising is not only good for your physical body, but it is so beneficial to your mental wellbeing and can help you work through difficult situations. For me, if I am stressed or if I have a problem that needs solving, sometimes all it takes is a quick 20 minute run to snap me outta my funk or give me a solution to my problem. Seriously – it works!
– Writing. My blog is an amazing form of downtime AND fun for me. I love writing, researching, and creating. It is something I have loved ever since I was a kid and would make up stories at the drop of a hat. On a similar note, keeping a journal is a nice way to reflect on the day and jot down your thoughts.
– Getting outside. While this does go with the exercise point above, you don’t necessarily need to go outside to sweat in order to reap the benefits. Simply standing outside and taking a big breath can help clear your mind and help you refocus. Being in nature is one of THE BEST ways to make you feel grounded. This may sound weird, but go outside in your bare feet and you will be amazed at how in tune you feel with the earth. It may be a little “WOO WOO” but seriously! Touch a tree. Go for a leisurely stroll on the trail and just take in all of your surroundings. We are meant to enjoy nature, and living in such a technology-dominated world takes us away from our true roots. I’m so punny.
– On the note of technology, step awayyyy from the computer! As someone who has a very sedentary job where I sit in my office all day, I LOVE when I can have the chance to escape the computer. Sure, blogging is online, social media is online, but guess what? It will all still be there when you return! Taking time to go for a walk with your dog, your loved one, your family, or just do anything but sit in front of a screen is much needed down time, away from the buzz and glare of electronics.
– Couch time. Okay, so I try not to spend every single evening on the couch or all weekend on the couch, but sometimes you just NEED to flop down and watch a movie. I’m not big on movies for the simple fact that I either a) fall asleep or b) get up half way through the show and start doing laundry, dishes, tidying, etc. However, the other night I thought to myself. You know what? I’m going to hang out with Nala and watch trashy TV. Why not? So, I sat down on the couch with my big bowl of salad and watched The Real Housewives of Toronto. It was kind of nice to veg out and enjoy the evening, and the drama on TV! Side note: is anyone else watching this!? How do we feel about Kara? That’s a whole other topic.
What are some of YOUR favourite ways to spend your downtime?