5 easy ways to avoid stress when you are not working.

Head towards an active lifestyle, declutter your home, sleep at least 7-9 hours, meal prep in advance, and make sure you don't underestimate the power of a daily dose of sunshine and outdoor greens!

Most of us, be it any profession, find it extremely difficult to stay off the grid. The minute we receive an email, call or text, we want to make sure it’s all taken care of. Most of the time, it is not expected. With a fast-paced lifestyle, sometimes we take too much on ourselves than we realize. We all look forward to weekends to unwind and destress but still fall prey to the vicious cycle of smonday-monday blues- week-long burnout.

Make sure you have time for the right burnout.

This sounds easy but most of the sedentary population does not even account for more than 5-6k steps in a day. Then again, some people overdo and work out at high intensity each and every day.

  • A good balance is to at least exercise 3-4 times a week (moderate-high intensity workouts) and give your body some physical rest for the rest of the week (low-intensity workouts).
  • Most people don’t realize that everyone needs to be active daily (cardio, core exercises, stretching, and strengthening) to avoid some of the most common health issues. It does not have to be an hour-long workout, even 15-30 minutes can make a significant difference.
  • Our faulty and repetitive postures contribute towards mental as well as physical fatigue, more than we realize.

Get out: Literally.

A typical day shift job always requires you to be up and about by 7-7:30 am. Even if we live close to work, we like to be prepared and reach sooner to prep our days. What we lose is the most important part of the day; morning sunshine. With winters having shorter days, it is no surprise that seasonal disorders take a toll on everyone.

  • Being outdoors boosts immunity, eyesight, and quality of sleep! Make sure to spend at least 15-20 minutes outdoors; ideally as part of the commute or for lunch (use that office patio finally). It is a good practice that allows you to have some mental break and all the people-watching, traffic, sunshine, and chaos are more helpful than we can tell.
  • If you do not have to drive or commute for hours during rush hour, you can use this time to have a longer morning; have coffee and breakfast in your patio/balcony before you leave so nothing at work comes in the way of your first meal!

Let’s get it done chop chop!

We all have been hangry at work because the food delivery messed up! Luckily, there are several food websites and apps that allow you to customize your meals according to your dietary preferences and restrictions. With so many recipes at your disposal, not only is it therapeutic to cook and eat healthy home-made meals daily, but it is also cost-effective. It takes about 30 minutes to an hour to do basic meal prep for the week. Even better, you don’t have to waste time thinking about lunch and dinner all the time! The best part about this, eating and drinking out on weekends feels like a true indulgence.

Snooze much? Lose much?

Sleep deprivation is so common that given any moment, most of us value sleep more than anything else in our adult life. We need at least 8 hours of good quality sleep.

  • Additionally, a recent study recommended that women need more sleep than men.
  • Turn off the lights at least 30 minutes before your sleep time; it relaxes your mind and body into sleeping.
  • Setting an alarm for sleeping at the same time daily goes a long way.
  • Reduce the screen time at night; many of us are guilty of browsing through the phones at night and that certainly takes up a good chunk of your quality time. Screen exposure is notorious for contributing to sleep deprivation.
  • There are several apps that facilitate better sleep; try Calm or Spotify for some white noise.

Household chores are as bad as we allow them to be…

It is obvious why the grocery stored is the most packed during weekends. Most of us keep household chores exclusively for the weekend just because it is more convenient. But if you take small steps daily to keep your house generally clean, you will be surprised what a breeze it is over the weekends.

  • Make sure your bed is made daily in the morning even before you start your day. Not many of us like to come home to crumpled sheets and duvets. Fun fact: National Sleep Foundation survey suggests that people sleep better in a clean bedroom.
  • Don’t keep the sink full of dishes because you are the one facing the filthy music daily. It is quicker to clean the dishes daily than to do it when they are all piled up over the weekend.
  • Another complaint that we all come across is laundry and folding. I can see how it can be a nightmare for parents but for others, Friday night can be a great way to get done with it. If not, choose a weekday when you have relatively more time and you can schedule your laundry cycle on that day! It is a mechanical less nerve-wracking job so you can even do it while watching Netflix.
  • If you are always on the run and barely have some downtime except for weekends; try online grocery delivery services. Not only it is a great time-saver, but it also helps avoid impulse shopping!

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