How to switch off and relax

Do you tend to feel as though your mind never really switches off? Being constantly “switched on” can be super stressful and can make it really hard to get to sleep and stay asleep.

Take these steps to help a busy brain to switch off and chill out:

Switch off your devices. It’s hard to wind down when your phone is pinging with notification right, left and center and most of the time, these aren’t messages that have to be dealt with there and then. Switching off your devices (or at the very least, muting them so you’re less aware of incoming notifications) is a great first step to calming your mind and getting in the right place to relax.

Switch things up when you get home. If you spend your working hours staring at a computer screen, it’s not always the best idea to go home and watch television. Think of it this way … your brain is essentially doing the same thing that it was before (in this case, staring at a screen, which can make it difficult to snap out of work mode. A better option when you get home? Find an activity that can signal to your brain that it’s “home” time and not “work” time. This could be as simple as having a quick mindful shower after changing out of your work clothes or spending 15 minutes curled up somewhere relaxing. Whatever you choose, the idea is that it gives your brain to refocus.

Indulge a hobby or interest. You might not feel like doing anything energetic after a day at work but even a short burst of exercise can boost your mood and tackle stress. Or you may prefer to do something more passive such as reading or baking. Ideally, go for an activity that has little or nothing to do with your skills at work.

Live in the NOW. Our lives feel as though they take a linear path, but in reality, everything that has ever happened to us or will happen to us occurs now. Appreciating that all we have is this moment can help us realize the pointlessness of worry, with its projection into a future that may never be.

Think Positive. Try it the next time the “what ifs” start to pile up. Worrying keeps you stuck in a negative thought loop. You’re much more likely to be able to relax and let go or stress with a positive mindset. Surrounding yourself with positive people also helps – worry can be contagious.

Until next time!