Many have transitioned to working from home over the past 10 to 12 months.
When your home is your workplace, and your workplace is in your home, how does one detach and destress?
How is it possible to unwind inside this space? Is it possible?
The good news: there are some practical ways you can detach and destress, and it is absolutely possible to unwind in your at-home workspace. It’s essential to be aware of workday stress, because it will impact those with whom you live. In order to avoid this there are some practices that you can do to manage the stress that comes from working in your home.
This article will focus on simple, realistic techniques that will allow you to cope with the stresses of the work week. These exercises will allow you to both alleviate stress and find ways to relax in your multi-functional living and work space.
Turn Off Your Devices
We are tuned in to our phones, email, instant messaging, project management systems and more all day long. One of the best ways to de-stress after a day of work is to turn off your phone and all the applications that come with it. Take the time to transition from work mode.
Turning off your phone and taking an intentional “digital detox,” even for a few hours, will go a long way to de-stressing your evening. Turning on a movie, listening to music, or reading a book instead of using your phone are great ways to unplug and de-stress for a small part of your day. Some of these could be ways to connect with others in your household as well.
Designated Spaces for Office Items
It can be really helpful to have bins, boxes or drawers where you can easily store your office items. When the work day is over, close down your office.
Store papers and office supplies so that they are out of sight. Sometimes having these items in sight can entice one to return to work when rest and relaxation are most needed. The mind can have us believing that we could just finish that one task to make tomorrow easier on ourselves.
While this is sometimes the case, productivity will be much higher the next morning after an evening of rest.
Moving the body is a great way to de-stress after a full and challenging day. Depending on your level of fitness, you can go for a long run or a swim that lasts hours.
However, even if you aren’t capable of activities that require endurance, simple and low-impact exercises can have the same effect of relieving stress.
Some of these exercises include:
- Burst Exercises – These are short, intense exercises that you do for 30 seconds at maximum power and then rest for 60 seconds. Sprinting, jumping rope, and swimming are some of the power exercises that will help you release stress.
- Yoga or Pilates – These two exercises are very popular for stress relief. They both can be done in varying intensities depending on how much of a workout you need.
- Walking – A simple walk will do wonders to lower your stress level after work. Being outside with fresh air and moving around is one of the best ways to de-stress.
Beyond doing these exercises after work, a wonderful way to prevent stress is to get some exercise into your workday:
- Set yourself up so you can do some of your work standing up
- Take time in between meetings to do squats, lunges, pushups and other exercises
- Break up your day with short walks
Fresh air and movement will help you feel more energized and calm.
During the work day, it can be challenging to find time to make nutiritious meals. Take some time during the evening or on the weekend to prepare healthy meals and snacks that can be easily heated. Be sure to eat away from your work station. It’s important to take true breaks and this can be more challenging when your work space is in your home.
There are some foods that can help you de-stress after a long day. While comfort foods are any foods that makes you feel better, some of them might not be too healthy! Be mindful of foods that spike your blood sugar, make you feel sluggish or sap your energy in other ways.
Green tea has now been found to reduce stress. Green tea contains a chemical called theanine which helps the body to relax and also counteracts the effect of caffeine. Having a nice warm cup of tea after a stressful day is very relaxing.
Another food that helps with relaxation are bananas. Bananas help regulate the body’s blood pressure because they are very high in potassium. If you feel like your blood pressure is too high from the stress of the day, then a banana might just do the trick.
Even if you don’t have a cup of tea or a banana, make sure you have something to eat. Hunger induces stress. Some people are so busy at work that they forget to eat all day. Not only is this unhealthy, it gives the body additional stress that can also affect the mind as well. Having a nice meal at the end of the day will go along way to reducing your stress level.
Find Your Comfort Zone
After you get home from a stressful day at the workplace, it is a good idea to have a safe, stress-free place to go and relax. It could be a cozy corner or a favourite airchair. It doesn’t have to be a specific place. Activities, such as journalling or doing a craft could help get you into a relaxed state too.
Time for mindfulness is another option. This could entail meditation or sitting in stillness with some candles and essential oils.
The purpose of the comfort zone is to have a place, activity or practice that will help you release and detach from the stress of work.
After a hard and stressful day at work, a good night’s sleep is the best way to relieve anxiety and stress. By having a warm bath, getting a massage, exercising or doing any of the other aforementioned ideas in this article, you should be in line for a solid night of sleep. A good, solid sleep will make the next day much more stress free.
There are many ways to de-stress after work. The key is to find the right technique that works best for you. Stress has a way of building up over time, which will negatively affect your health. Finding a way to relax after work will go along way to making your life healthier and easier. When your office is in your home, take the extra time to set yourself up for success. Your health will benefit!