How to make time for yourself once home from the office
Whether you work in Public Relations, Fashion or Magazine industry, being women who want to pursue a fulfilled career, we know all to well that life can get pretty manic at times. We’ve had the privilege to land the job of our dreams so while we start our day with a large black coffee to keep focused and get work done, we need to stop and consider how pushing long hours and working through lunch can cause levels of stress that, in the long run, can be extremely unhealthy.
As the Huffington Post explains, stress has been linked to a variety of negative side effects. Aside from just burning us out mentally, stress is also a contributor to a weakened immune and digestive system, insomnia, and weight gain. Furthermore, it has been shown to cause premature ageing, a problem women spend billions on the beauty industry each year to disguise. While stress might be one of the most terrifying illnesses of the modern world, there are plenty of ways to manage it and live a happier and healthier life.
So what can we do to feel better and less stressed?
In the words of Elle Woods, ‘exercise gives you endorphins; endorphins make you happy.’ It’s a simple fact of reality that people who exercise tend to be happier and more productive, but this doesn’t mean you have to wake up hours before work to get in a heavy workout. There are plenty of exercises you can do throughout your workday, and simply doing a little yoga periodically can greatly reduce your stress levels during and after work. Make sure to take a few minutes here and there to move your body and relax. Even a short walk around the office can do wonders for your health.
If you’re anything like us, you know that there’s nothing better than getting home and unwinding after a long and productive day at work. And we cannot stress how important it is to do just that. Change out of your work clothes, turn off your iphone, pour yourself a glass of red wine, light and candle, kick back and leave your worries and must-do’s in the office. Us career-women need to find time to ourselves and switch our brain from work mode to relaxation mode.
When was the last time you read a book? Getting lost in a great story from a book, your favourite TV show or movie is one of the easiest ways to forget about deadlines and the 150 emails in your inbox waiting to be read, at least for a little while, and technology has made these escapes easier to acquire than ever. We can get great shows and movies on demand from any television or smartphone, and can even stream online directly. Watch a good comedy like Couples Retreat or nerv-vracking thriller like Hannibal – Karen Krizanovich on Picturebox’s movie blog insists it has “therapeutic hilarity.” Taking a break from life for an hour or two each day and enjoying fiction is one of the best stress relievers; take your mind off reality for a few minutes each day and you will surely be happier and feel less stressed.
An even easier approach to relieving your stress every day is to simply make some time to laugh. Even if you aren’t laughing at anything in particular and are simply forcing it, the simple motions of laughing can help reduce stress and make you happier. Not only does laughing relax your muscles and help your body release endorphins, it actually reduces the levels of cortisol, a hormone that is released during stress and has negative impacts on women, including suppressing the immune system and decreasing bone formation. Of course, it is a lot easier to laugh naturally, and it is not a bad idea to keep things you find humorous at hand, whether they be your favourite comic strips, your best friends, or simply pictures of cats failing at jumping. In addition, getting in a good laugh now and then will help encourage you to smile more often, another simple exercise that is shown to make people happier—whether it’s forced or not.
Next time you are stressing out over work, relationships, your body, or anything else in the world, remember that stress only makes these problems even worse. This is especially true for our physical health, and simply taking time to relax and be happy every day can do more for our bodies than any amount of beauty projects or health crazed dieting. Even if you already make time all for yourself before and after work, try to squeeze in a few minutes during the day as well, you will thank yourself later!