5 Tips for relaxation
If you are feeling stressed out, one of the best things you can do is go for a run or hit the gym. Although you may feel more inclined to veg out in front of the TV to relax, exercise is great for releasing mood-boosting chemicals such as endorphins and anandamide, which can help to lower anxiety and increase mental wellbeing. As well as having a great effect on your mood and stress levels, exercise is also good for taking your mind off problems and helping to induce sleep.
Take deep breaths
If you are short on time, one of the quickest ways to relax is to take a few deep breaths.
Anxiety can cause people to breathe more rapidly than normal and taking deep, slow breaths can be an effective aid to relaxation. If you are frequently feeling anxious or stressed, it can be helpful to implement deep breathing into your regular routine by doing breathing exercises regularly or joining a yoga, Pilates or meditation class; all of which use deep breathing to promote relaxation and wellbeing.
Listen To Music
Many of us are aware that listening to our favourite music puts us in a good mood, and studies have now found that music is also good for reducing stress. Various studies have indicated a strong link between music and lowered stress levels in everyday life, while research has also indicated that music can lower extreme levels of stress in people undergoing surgery, critically ill patients and pregnant women. Rather than seeking out "relaxing" genres of music, it is best to go with your individual taste and choose whatever type of music boosts your mood.
have a laugh
Laughter is well-known for its therapeutic effects, and many places now offer laughter therapy or laughter yoga classes to those seeking to boost their health and mood. Studies have in fact found that even the anticipation of laughter can help us to relax by lifting our spirits and reducing stress levels in the body. If you are serious about your relaxation, you could consider attending a laughter class, but chilling out with a funny DVD, book or friend is an equally great option to help you relax.
One of the best - and most luxurious - ways to unwind is to treat yourself to a spot of pampering. If your budget extends to it, you could have somebody else pamper you by heading to a health spa or beauty salon for a massage, facial or beauty treatment of your choice. Alternatively, you could indulge in a bit of DIY pampering by running yourself a bath, lighting some candles and lying back with a relaxing face mask and some calming music.