10 EXCELLENT WAYS TO DE-STRESS | THE LONDON MUSINGS GUIDE TO RELAXATION
Today I am revealing 10 excellent ways to de-stress from the pressures of work / life. I have very nearly completed one full year of self-employment, so it felt right to produce something a little reflective. This article is a tribute to those who are in need of relaxation after a very busy year. Building The Musings Collection has brought a huge joy to my life but it hasn’t been without its stresses! Many of us dream of owning a business but nothing can ever prepare us for the whirlwind of hard work that is involved with starting a company from scratch. Whatever your work or life situation, I hope that this article inspires you to release unnecessary stresses and spend a little more time enjoying yourself.
1.) Digital Detox
These words are becoming very overused on social media, how ironic! I try to have at least one day a week where the phone stays locked up and out of my grasp. A fellow events planner, Sian, likes to leave her work phone in the car overnight, every night. This device detachment is a brilliant way to have some much needed time out from the digital world, allowing you to focus on real-life experiences such as book-reading, exercise, socialising, family time, cooking, housework…and whatever else you like to get up to offline.
2.) Tea and Ben Fogle or Countryfile
Since quitting alcohol just over a month ago, i’ve been raiding independent tea shops like there is no tomorrow. I’ve graduated from Twinings to T2 and Bluebird Tea Company, becoming more and more obsessed with obscurely shaped straining devices and bizarre combinations of tea leaves and flavours. I also love Tea and Biscuit Club in Arundel - Copacabana is my latest favourite loose leaf find. At the end of the day, I will stick on a country-themed show to de-city myself and I will try and fail to drink an entire mug tea before it gets cold!
3.) Meditation and Mindfulness Classes
I have always struggled to calm my over-active brain. Whether it’s the ADHD or the coffee, my thoughts and ideas seem to flood in and out at 1000 mph. Although this is great for creative planning, productivity and thinking on the spot, it is also bad when it comes to ‘down time’ or sleeping. My introduction to meditation and mindfulness was a Como Shambhala wellness event at The Metropolitan Hotel in Mayfair, where I quickly discovered and delighted in the calming powers of sound baths, lavender, non-caffeine turmeric lattes and ‘switch-off’ techniques. If you’re in London, check out The Metropolitan Hotel and Saturday morning Meditation & Mindfulness at Matt Roberts in Mayfair. Relaxation-focused classes are a fantastic way to end the working week / start the weekend.
4.) Get Away from Other Humans
Are your colleagues / kids / parents / partners driving you mad? Sorry to be a Grinch, but you really do need to find a way to escape to a ‘safe place’ - whether it is a favourite coffee shop, shopping district, national park, gym or even another room (with the door shut and head phones in). It is really important for our sanity and self-love to remain unabridged and in contact with our true selves. The only real way to process our opinions, desires and decisions is to consult with ourselves away from the noise and influence of others. Make a habit of ‘me time’, even when it seems impossible to get away.
5.) Monthly Massage
I don’t want to sound like a self-indulgent brat but I really do like to have a monthly massage! If, like me, you are on the go 24/7, you will be acquiring pulled muscles, cramp, pins and needles, trapped nerves and aches and pains along the way. A massage is a great opportunity to lock the phone away, press pause, iron out any muscle-related dramas and give your body a little love and appreciation for everything it does for you on a daily basis. Keep an eye on the spa section of The Wellness Musings for my UK spa reviews if you’re looking for recommendations.
6.) Nature Walks
A hearty walk surrounded by beautiful, natural surroundings is one great, free way to completely flood your mind, body and soul with wonderful endorphins. Looking for clarity? Walk. About to make a big, potentially life-changing decision? Walk. About to punch a wall from stress? Walk. Want to bond with a friend or loved one? Walk. I really cannot downplay the benefits of walking. Mr Musings and I have two favourite walking spots this month: Linlithgow in West Lothian and Brecon Beacons in East Sussex. I’ve even invested in some ‘professional walking gear’ (more on this later)!
7.) Get Juicing
I recently went vegan (yes, I am thoroughly on the health wagon and fully projecting Hermione Granger vibes). The juicer has become my best friend because I find it really difficult to get my five-a-day in when I am always on the go and thus surviving on convenience foods. The new me starts the day with a vibrant purple juice consisting of 1 handful of berries (blackberries and blueberries), 2 apples, pineapple and coconut water. In the evening for dinner, I am juicing 1 large handful of spinach, 1 large handful of kale, 1/2 broccoli, 1 apple, lemon juice and coconut water. Juice is a fantastic for energy, a natural winter plague repellent and a great way to digest much-needed nutrients. It is also surprisingly filling for those of you considering juice as a meal replacement during a detox.
8.) Regular Trips Away
I am very appreciative of the fact I can work remotely, from anywhere in the world (all I need is a WiFi connection). I am currently writing in a hotel lobby in Exeter, Devon. Removing myself from the momentum of daily life (wake up, commute, office, commute, home) allows me to experience new things, be inspired, meet new people and broaden my horizons. With a plethora of affordable flights and accommodation readily available, why not plan several thrilling excursions for 2019?
9.) Immerse Yourself in Music
As a huge Queen fan, I was blessed beyond my wildest dreams to spend a little time with Brian May last month at a science talk in Kensington. This was the week of the Carnaby Street Christmas lights switch-on (featuring Bohemian Rhapsody lyrics) and the world premiere of Bohemian Rhapsody, the movie (I was also blessed to attend this - thanks Mr Musings)! Much to my delight, Queen is now everywhere and it feels like it’s 1977 again. During my moments with Queen this month, I have felt completely removed from any stress whatsoever, so this is proof that music is a very powerful form of escapism and joy for us humans. Spending a little time discovering new music and revelling in our love for old favourites can be done anywhere and everywhere.
There are hundreds of different ways to keep fit in the city, whether it is through running in our beautiful parks or attending a class at one of the many London gyms. If you hate the gym, get on YouTube and indulge in some hilarious 1980s exercise routines. Exercise is a fantastic natural remedy for depression, anxiety, and stress, also helping to improve your memory, sleep and mood. I do not have a natural love for exercise and I am certainly not claiming to be Jane Fonda, but I do see and feel the benefits of a little cardio / 50/100 daily squats.
Visit The Wellness Musings for regular healthy lifestyle updates and more tips on how to kiss goodbye to stress.