When was the last time that you were not experiencing stress?
If you’re having difficulty remembering, you should really change that!
If you’re like most women, you live a busy life filled with work or school, appointments, family, errands, and countless responsibilities. When you think about all the things you’re responsible for, it’s not hard to understand why you’re stressed.
Often, it isn’t easy to work time for yourself into a busy schedule. It can sometimes feel scary and hard to take a break when you’re stressed since so many things can feel dependent on you. This is commonly a recipe for burnout.
Taking time to de-stress regularly is essential for your happiness and well-being.
You need to add de-stress activities to your life.
I’ve complied 30 (!) de-stress activities spanning three categories: fun, relaxing, and unconventional.
These de-stress activities are meant to help you re-gain a little me-time as a way to reduce your stress levels. Feel free to work these practices and routines into your life on a daily or weekly basis
So, what does it actually mean to de-stress?
De-stressing is the act of deliberately taking the time to relieve physical and mental pressure regularly.
Essentially, de-stressing allows you to unburden yourself from the stresses of everyday life regularly.
This act can be done through various means, including physical or mental practices, routines, and customs.
One primary key to de-stressing is getting out of your head and being mindful about separating yourself from work, school, or other responsibilities to truly relax.
With the help of regular de-stress activities, you can incorporate daily practices designed to cultivate calm and relax your body and mind.
Did you know that spending time outside is one of the quickest and easiest ways to de-stress and clear your head? Whether you’re transitioning from work or school to your evening routine or winding down after dinner and before bed, taking a brief walk around the block is a great way to relieve stress.
Believe it or not, playing video games is an excellent way to de-stress. Video games allow you to shut your brain off and temporarily escape to a different world and should be added to your arsenal of de-stress activities. Whether you enjoy simple games that are easy to learn and play or complex games that require time and attention, there are games suitable to your de-stressing needs.
Do you want to read something but don’t want to get sucked into a book? Try reading a magazine instead! Reading a magazine can be a simple way to feel calm, learn new information, get inspiration for your life, and relax all at the same time. Looking at the bright colors and reading the short articles are a great way to de-stress after a long day.
If you have a pet, you’re fully aware of how calming it can be to play or snuggle with them. Studies show that taking the time to pet, cuddle, hold, and love on your pet can have fantastic health benefits, like lowered blood pressure and decreased feelings of loneliness. Don’t have a pet? Consider asking a friend to play with their pet, volunteer at an animal shelter, or foster a pet as one of your de-stress activities.
We all know that watching TV can be a great way to turn off your brain and relax. Try maximizing these feelings by having a planned marathon watch session of your favorite TV shows or movies. The feelings of joy and nostalgia that you experience while watching your favorite shows and movies are sure to help you de-stress.
Socializing is one of many de-stress activities that can be done in various ways and can be effective in multiple forms. The simplest way to work communicating with others into your day is to call or text a friend. Whether you want to catch up with a friend or fill them in on your life’s occurrences, consider reducing stress by conversing with your closest friends.
If you’re like most people, you have music that just makes you feel calm. Whether you enjoy listening to R&B, classical, or jazz music, try turning on a playlist that gets you in the mood to unwind. If you need the inspiration to use music as one of your de-stress activities, consider using lo-fi instrumental music, which can get you in the mental space to focus or relax.
When was the last time you met up with your friends in person? If it’s been a while since you’ve been face-to-face with your best buddies, consider having an outing with them! Whether you prefer to see a movie, take a walk, or have brunch, lunch, or dinner with your friends, seeing your best buds in person can be a great way to reconnect and de-stress.
Laughter is an excellent stress reliever and one of the most common de-stress activities. As a result, it is immensely beneficial to find ways to laugh regularly. Listen to your favorite comedic podcast, watch clips of stand-up comedy on YouTube or watch your favorite comedy shows and films as a way to inject humor into your life regularly.
When you want to settle in at home and relax, there’s often nothing better than a nice calming meal. Try having your favorite takeout meal delivered to you to harness this feeling. Not only can ordering takeout bring a sense of fun, but you may also even end up with leftovers which eliminates the stress of deciding what to eat the next day.
Feeling pampered and taken care of is a great way to de-stress. Harness the power of this feeling by getting a professional manicure or pedicure. In addition to feeling soothed by having your hands and feet tended to, you also emerge with refreshed fingers and toes. How can you beat that?
Many of us clean ourselves by taking quick showers. However, we rarely take the time to slow down and take a nice and relaxing bath. Using the warm water and forced stillness of a bath is a great way to de-stress and unwind after a long day or even before your day starts. As a bonus, you can tailor baths to your preferences by making them as basic or fancy as you like.
There’s no cozier feeling than sitting in a chair (or on the couch) in your comfiest clothes. Add a book, and you’re really in comfort mode. As one of the most common de-stress activities, getting lost in a book while safe, warm, and cozy at home is a profoundly relaxing feeling. Add a mug of hot coffee, tea, or hot chocolate, and it would be nearly impossible not to feel stress ebb away.
If you have tense muscles and stress built up in your body, a professional massage may be just the thing you need to unwind. Studies show that massages effectively provide touch therapy, which automatically calms recipients. Having your muscles kneaded and tended to is also a surefire way to physically relax, contributing to the mental calm you feel.
Do you ever just stop and breathe mindfully? If not, it’s time to incorporate breathing exercises into your relaxation routine. Believe it or not, breathing exercises like deep breathing and box breathing are excellent ways to reconnect your mind and body and cultivate calm feelings at any time.
If you’re feeling tired or just want a quick refresh, consider taking a short nap. In addition to getting a few minutes of extra sleep, napping can also help to lower your blood pressure and enhance your mood. You can do this underrated practice anytime you need a boost, but it is best to do it in the early afternoon. Keeping your nap to a duration of 10 to 20 minutes provides you with the benefits of napping without affecting your sleep.
Are you looking for a simple way to feel cozy and secure? Consider using a weighted blanket! In recent years, the popularity of weighted blankets has increased due to the enhanced quality of sleep that they provide. Available in countless varieties, weights, and materials, weighted blankets help alleviate anxious feelings by enhancing comfort and calm.
Did you know that something as simple as removing makeup and washing your face can be one of your de-stress activities? A skincare routine is a great way to incorporate a regular practice into your everyday life. Additionally, the act of cleansing your skin can help to soothe feelings of anxiety, all while promoting having great skin.
Candles are for more than just looking pretty. They can actually serve as a way to relax your mind and enhance your mood. Depending on the scent that you choose, you can easily set the mood with uplifting, cozy, floral, or grounding scents. Try lighting a candle as part of an evening routine to signal to your brain that it’s time to relax.
One of the most common ways to reduce stress, alleviate anxious feelings, and calm the mind is meditation. Whether you’re new to the practice or are familiar, meditation can also be used as a way to de-stress anytime. If you’re new to meditation, consider using apps like Headspace and Calm, which offer brief meditation routines tailored to eliminating stress.
Never underestimate the power of cleaning when it comes to de-stressing. Consider this one of many practical de-stress activities as it’s just as functional as effective. In addition to working out stress while cleaning, you receive a mental break by focusing on what you’re doing. When you finish, you also reap the rewards of a clean and tidy room/house/item.
When was the last time that you took yourself out on a date? If the answer is “never,” you’re not alone! Many of us don’t realize how powerful it can be to take ourselves out and do something relaxing, enjoyable, or fun. If you enjoy visiting restaurants, take yourself to dinner. Like art? Consider going to a museum alone. Whatever you choose to do, just make sure that it brings calm in addition to your voluntary solitude.
Taking the time to map out and imagine your dream life can be an excellent way to alleviate stress and conjure feelings of contentment, motivation, and joy. Try creating a vision board as one of your de-stress activities to ignite these feelings. The vision board can be physical or digital, but the goal is to experience calming and joyous emotions whenever you look at your masterpiece.
Do you regularly take the time to collect and record your thoughts? If not, you should consider writing in a journal. The simple act of writing is an incredibly underrated way to reduce anxiety, stress, and depression. Try incorporating the act of journaling, even if only for a few minutes, into your daily life to de-stress. If you’re new to writing, consider using a guided journal to get started.
Having the right mindset can be a crucial factor in alleviating stress. A straightforward way to quickly alter your brain is to recite affirmations. This versatile practice is an excellent way to cultivate feelings of happiness, self-love, and contentment anytime. As a bonus, whether you use pre-written affirmations or ones you create, you can tailor the affirmations that you choose to say to whatever you’d like to enhance or reduce.
Personality quizzes are a fun way to relax and simultaneously learn about yourself. While personality quizzes, like the Myers-Briggs and Enneagram tests, aren’t necessarily meant to be taken entirely seriously, there can often be some truth in their results. Use the findings as a light-hearted insight into your personality.
Retail therapy can be a fun way to relieve stress and have fun, but it can be hard on your wallet. Harness the fun of shopping without spending by having a virtual window shopping spree. Visit your favorite online retailers and, rather than adding items to your cart, add your wannabe purchases to your wish list. This way, you’re still having fun without the burden of unplanned purchases.
Freshen up your space, and your brain, by decluttering a room. Set a timer for 20 minutes and do your best to put items away, throw the trash into the garbage, and straighten up the room in a short-time period. Believe it or not, having a decluttered and clear space is a great way to de-stress quickly.
If you ever find yourself stressing over things that you need to do, errands that you need to run, and other essential tasks, creating a master to-do list can be super helpful. Getting everything that you’re thinking about out of your head and onto paper (or even onto your phone) can be an excellent way to clear your head while also allowing you to make plans to get things done. *Pro-tip: If your thoughts are racing in general, consider doing a brain dump as well.
Do you take deliberate breaks from your phone, computer, tablet, TV, and other electronic devices? If not, you may not realize just how valuable spending time away from tech can be. Rather than being glued to a screen, taking a break to unplug from technology allows you to rest, get in tune with your thoughts, and have much-needed time away from social media, news, work, and other potentially stressful things. *Pro-tip: Consider regularly having a tech-free weekend to reset your brain as one of your de-stress activities.
With the hustle and bustle of everyday life, we often forget to take time to de-stress regularly.
The 30 de-stress activities discussed here are great ways to alleviate stressful feelings and chill in fun, relaxing, and unconventional ways.
For best results, try incorporating at least one of these de-stress activities into your daily life as a way to create a routine and unwind daily.
MEET THE BLOGGER
Founder. Creative. Innovator. Artist. Writer. I'm here to take you along with me as we explore personal development, lifestyle, wellness, and self-care... together.
The best tips and strategies on leveling up your self-care, personal maintenance, self-love, and more.
Want the secrets to upgrading your self-care to untold levels of yumminess? Sign up here to get the guide.