When you commute to the office every day and get back home by a certain time, unwinding post-work isn't a difficult thing to do. Mostly because you know how to differentiate between pre-work, during work, and post-work. The boundaries are crystal clear. But when the office is no longer a place you have to travel to every morning, and your home is where you are working from, things get a tad blurrier, and time periods aren't as distinctly divided.
So basically, you no longer have a specific time of the day, dedicated to pure relaxation, and unwinding. And as most of us have started to realize by now, if we thought our office hours were already hectic to begin with, working from home is a whole different ball game. Which brings us to the fundamental question, "how do I unwind after work, when I no longer know what "after work" means?"
Well, if that hit way too close to home, here's what you need to do first. Establish a structure, and even if you can no longer plan your workday as meticulously as you once could, establish a strict start, and end time. And when the time to shut shop does roll by, be ready to leave your desk the way you would if you had to take the metro home.
Done? Now, let's begin with this round-up of 7 things you can do to unwind and relax after working from home.
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1. Take An Indulgent Hot Shower
For a couple of minutes, just let the hot water wash off the strain of your work from home day. Feel your muscles unwind and relax, your body loosen. For good measure, throw in some pleasant bath products, preferably ones centred around aromatherapy. Try naturally relaxing scents like lavender, cinnamon or peppermint.
2. Create A Playlist From Scratch
Once you've wrapped up work for the day, grab your headphones and phone and sit in a corner with one sole purpose, discovering new cool music. Run through Spotify, Apple Music or whatever your preferred music application is and make use of features like song radios, artist playlists, and related songs. Create a playlist out of the new tunes you end up discovering. An unwinding activity with long term yields? Count us in!
3. Practice A Few Minutes Of Mindful Meditation
After a long, tiring work from home day, it's easy to get caught up with the unpleasant details of your day or obsess over upcoming deadlines. But thinking about work, after you're done with work is counter-intuitive to having a healthy work-life balance. So what you need to do is practice a few mindful exercises, that will bring all your senses back to the present moment. Try apps like Headspace, Calm and Simple Habit for guided mindful meditation instructions and videos.
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4. Kick Your Feet Up And Listen To A Podcast
For a lot of us, the exciting world of podcasts remains largely unexplored. Endlessly entertaining, and simple to follow, a podcast is a great way to gain information, distract your mind, or just lose yourself in a fascinating tale after a difficult work from home day. So look for a podcast that appeals to your sensibilities, put on your headphones, and unwind with your newly discovered source of entertainment. Check out THIS list for some interesting podcast recommendations.
5. Laugh Off The Stress With A Quick Stand-up Video
When it comes to combating stress and anxiety, there's nothing that works as well as the good ol' medicine of hearty, carefree laughter. Especially after a particularly difficult work from home, it's easy to get wrapped up in unnecessary negativity. Mitigate that by watching an entertaining stand-up video on Youtube, and laughing all the stress of. Check THIS out for the best 10-minute stand-up video recommendations.
6. Create Something
It does not have to be worthy of being put in a museum, or even as an Instagram post. This activity is all about expressing yourself by creating something, whether its a poem, a doodle, or even a well-shot Boomerang. Releasing creative energy is always rejuvenating, for both your mind and body, and also makes for the perfect activity to unwind with after work from home.
7. Dance Like No-One's Watching
Because no one is! We all know how great it feels to leave office on a Friday evening, and head out to the club with our friends. But now that all the clubs are indefinitely shut, you have to create one for yourself at home. So blast your favourite music, and dance around your bedroom. Not only will it help you de-stress, but a dance session is also a great way to sneak in some exercise, or at the very least, physical movement.
So the next time your boss pings you during your relaxation after work time, feel free to text "we were on a break!"