take a break from life, magazine, coffee, orchid
How to take a break from life. Photo: Mark Alexander @lostpeony

Regardless of what you do and how you do it, you can’t always avoid pressure and stressful situations. The good news is that you are built to cope with them. In some cases, a little bit of pressure and stress can be stimulating and increase your productivity too.

Life happens at quite a speed which is sometimes multiplied by unwanted events and unplanned situations. It is then when you begin to struggle. It’s overwhelming, tiring and irritating.

The warning light starts to flash when you rely on caffeine to get you through the long day and when the things you once enjoyed, are now chores. That’s your body’s way of telling you that you need to slow down.

Here’s how to take a break from life: physically, mentally, emotionally, socially and from technology too:

How to take a physical break from life

  • Make time for some extra sleep because that’s how your body recharges. Go to bed an hour early and set your alarm for an hour late. Take a nap in the middle of the day if you can.
  • Don’t exercise for a day or two. If you are tired and exhausted, the last thing you need is a gym workout or an hour on the treadmill.
  • Go to the sauna, steam room or take a long bath. Any one of these will help you relax your muscles and relieve you from unwanted tension. A visit to the sauna or steam room will make you sweat out the toxins that you have accumulated in your body while the long hot bath will cleanse your skin.

How to take a mental break from life

  • Make some time for breathing exercises. Have you noticed how your breathing changes when you are stressed and under pressure? The best thing you can do in these situations is to get your breathing back to normal.
    Here are some NHS breathing exercises for stress – www.nhs.uk
  • Escape to nature and embrace the outdoors. Go out for a walk and appreciate your surroundings. Take yourself away from all of your troubles and immerse yourself in the beauty of mother nature instead.
  • Do nothing for as long as you feel. It may seem counterproductive but it’s not. It’s much better to stop and do nothing than stressing out trying to do everything at once. Turn your computer off and read a book instead. Make yourself a drink and flick through the pages of a magazine or do anything else but work.

How to take an emotional break from life

  • A good place to start is to let go of negative emotions and feelings. Take a piece of paper and write down everything and anything that stresses you and anything that charges you with negative energy. Be as specific and as detailed as you wish. Then take all of your troubles and burn them. Quite literally. If you can’t burn that piece of paper now, then tear it into small pieces and dispose of them – flush them down the toilet.
  • You will feel much better if you count your achievements and success instead of stressing out about things that are out of your control. Write down all of your achievements and successes and be proud of them because they are the evidence of your abilities and hard work.
  • Don’t regret, dream! Living with regrets is pointless and it gives you no comfort. Whenever you catch yourself regretting anything, shift your attention and start dreaming instead. Think of what you need to do to achieve that dream. Think of the things that that dream will enable you to do when you achieve it.

How to take a social break from life

  • Spend quality time by yourself instead of relying on others. Make some time to pamper yourself at home or have a spa day on your own. Get a stash of your favourite treats and watch a film snuggled under a cosy blanket. For me, that’s anything ever produced by Nordic Noir with Prosecco and macaroons.
  • Order your favourite meal as a takeaway instead of cooking it yourself. Use that extra time to indulge in guilty pleasures such as reading celebrity gossip. You need to keep up with the things everyone else is talking about, right? 🙂
  • It’s OK to politely turn down invitations for dinner parties and social gatherings. Don’t make it into a habit though. Otherwise these invitations will stop arriving altogether.

How to take a technology break from life

  • Limit your social media usage and schedule your email tasks to once or twice a day. Both of these tasks seem harmless but they have the potential to consume too much of your time without you even realising it. Time you can use to relax or do something else to make yourself feel better.
  • Make it part of your evening routine and don’t use any gadgets after 9pm. Why? Because the light that all of your gadgets release keeps you awake. If you want to read in bed, then read a book, magazine or the newspaper.
  • Get into the habit of having a technology-free day once a week. That will give your eyes a break from staring at a screen. It will also free some time for other activities.

That’s how to take a break from life and I urge you to do the things on this list at least once a week as prophylactic measures. Don’t wait until your body screams and begs you to slow down.

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