One Night, Twice The Relaxation
NOT EVERYONE FINDS RELAXATION EASY, ESPECIALLY IF YOUR MIND IS WHIRRING FROM A BUSY DAY AT WORK BUT THERE ARE THINGS YOU CAN DO TO COAX YOUR MIND, BODY AND SOUL INTO SWITCHING OFF. CANDLES, COOKING, EVEN COLOURING IN, GET READY TO INDULGE IN YOUR COSIEST NIGHT IN, EVER!
Step one: Set the scene
Don’t start planning the next day or ticking off tasks on the to-do list pre-slumber.
It sounds cliché but the flicker of a flame and faint scent of essential oils can be all it takes to reduce those stress levels from mammoth to minute so the moment you get in, light your favourite candle (we love Scent to Calm & Relax™ blends post 6pm). By the time you take your coat off, the fragrance will already have filled the room and you’ll feel more Zen.
Step two: Turn up the temperature
Muscles need to be warm to relax and if you’ve been hunched up at a desk all day, they’ll take even longer to loosen up so change into some cashmere or fleecy loungewear that isn’t restricting and that keeps your core temperature toasty. Hot water bottles or heatable homeopathic presses filled with aromatic herbs are another one of our stress saviors.
Step three: Do the downward dog
Yoga or not, everyone can benefit from some basic stretches. Whether it’s a case of lying on the floor with your arms and legs stretched out or a set of dynamic yoga poses, if you don’t know where to start, log onto a site like doyogawithme.com that has hundreds of free tutorials or download a free app like Daily Yoga where all the sessions are under 30 minutes.
Step four: Feed your soul (and your stomach)
For some of us, cooking can be a natural de-stresser and if it is, plan your evening in around your food. The sense of satisfaction when you tuck in will be immense – just make sure you eat it mindfully and appreciate all the effort you put in. And if you’re not a foodie, don’t skip dinner, just try something quick and easy like a chicken stir-fry, veggie-filled feta-topped frittata or soup with crusty croutons.
Step five: Give your brain some breathing space
If boxsets are what stop your brain from going into overdrive, whack one on but give yourself plenty of time away from the TV before bed. Likewise, avoid computers and phones that blare out blue light (put them away once you’ve done your yoga session!). Instead, grab that book you’ve been meaning to read or swap Candy Crush for colouring in. Back in fashion, Colour Yourself to Mindfulness has pages and pages of motifs for you to experiment with. Following the principles of art therapy, by focusing on the colours, patterns and shapes, your mind will be able to unwind and distract itself from any other worries that might be hampering your happiness. It’s our new favourite hobby.
Step six: Catch up on some beauty maintenance
Paint your nails, take a bath, pop on a face mask, they’re all relatively easy rituals that will pep you up and improve your mood, not just for minutes but for days. Better-looking skin, a shiny new mani or a simple soak – just remember to inform your nearest and dearest of your planned night in so they don’t interrupt you when you’re mid mask or manicure!
Step seven: Go to bed
Don’t start planning the next day or ticking off tasks on the to-do list pre-slumber. Whip up a warming drink like hot chocolate and almond milk and use that as your 30-minute countdown to lights out. Sip it while you finish your chapter or reconvene with your other half - just don’t go near that phone! Chances are you’ll lull yourself into such a state of relaxation you won’t be able to keep your eyes open any longer. Pure bliss!
How do you relax? Tell us using #NeomWellbeing or tag @neomorganics.