We’re all pushed for time in 2019: jobs are getting more demanding, and omnipresent mobile tech means there’s no excuse not to check in on emails while you commute, and keep on working well into the evening when you should be kicking back, catching up on TV and enjoying the company of family, friends and partners – as applicable. We’re driven to be productive, so even in our down time, we look to pastimes and hobbies that we treat as jobs or self improvement: things we can work hard on, improve and excel at rather than things we simply enjoy.
To reclaim the lost art of relaxation, we need to make plans, block out time and ensure we follow through, and that’s just what we’re here to help you do today.
Respect Your Time
You need leisure time to avoid burnout, and you need to treat as being just as important and sacrosanct as work commitments. If you’ve set a time for yourself to take a long bath, to watch a movie, reorganise your book shelves, or whatever counts as relaxing for, then you need to show that commitment, and yourself, as much respect as you would a meeting with your manager.
When you’re parenting children (or training a dog!) consistency is important: if you promise (or threaten) something, you need to follow through so they know they can trust you. You need to treat yourself just the same: if you’ve been promising yourself a hot bath and a glass of wine as a reward for getting through a stressful task, then don’t deliver, you’ll start to lose your own ability to motivate yourself!
Driving yourself hard is seen as a virtue, but you need to make sure you make time to recharge afterwards if you want to keep up the pace.
Dress the Part
Changing your wardrobe is a good way to send a signal to your body that things are different, and clothes that feel different to your normal business attire will physically tell you that this isn’t a normal business day.
Adding some Slides footwear to your wardrobe, along with a couple of pieces of luxurious loungewear like cashmere onesies, means you’re set up for a slow, relaxing Sunday.
Break the Routine
If you’re stressed out at work, then that stress could leak out into your normal routine, and you may start associating even perfectly innocuous things with tension. The stress response happens below the level of conscious thought so it’s not something you can control.
Getting out of your normal routine can help! Doing novel things creates new memories, and makes the time you spend doing them seem longer. You have to pay more attention, and that makes the time seem comparatively longer. Far from boredom stretching out time, it’s novelty and learning new things that makes time seem longer.
If you want to get more out of your weekends and escape stress, plan something new, whether it’s a class, some volunteering or taking up a new hobby.