When we get stressed out at work, that stress can carry over into our home life, because the stress hormones don’t simply disappear from our body when we walk out the office door, they stay with us until we can wind down properly.
When we are stressed, our heart rate is increased, the blood is flowing faster around the body and you are a lot more edgy and irritable.
That means that, as well your health, your family life could suffer from your being stressed out too. Even if you might not be able to rid yourself of all your stress at work, there are positive steps that you can take when you get home to calm yourself down. Here are ten tips on how to relieve stress, when you get home from a hard day at work.
1. Cut yourself off from work
It’s important to create boundaries between your work life and your home life, especially if you have a really stressful job.
Working at home on the occasional evening or weekend is something that many people just can’t avoid, but it shouldn’t be a regular thing. Draw a line under the working day and stop checking your work email. Even just checking your work email could put you back into work mode again and it will bring your stress levels right back up again.
2. Take a nice long hot bath
This is another amazing tip on how to relieve stress. You can reinforce that feeling of having left work and get home, by taking a nice hot bath and putting on a fresh set of clothes.
A hot bath will relax your muscles and you will feel the stress beginning to leave you, the instant you step into the hot water.
3. Try progressive muscle relaxation
A good technique on how to relieve stress and relax is to slowly relax your muscles, one by one, starting at your feet and working your way up your entire body.
You could do this while you are taking your bath. Starting with your feet, tense and then relax every muscle in your body right up to the muscles in your face. By the time you have finished, you will feel relaxed all over.
4. Eat a banana
Eating a banana will make your feel a lot better, because the potassium that is contained in bananas will lower your blood pressure and help to ease the symptoms of stress. The American Psychological Association recommends bananas as a food to combat stress because they help to protect your body against the damage that stress can cause.
5. Go for a walk on the way home
Stopping off on the way home and taking a walk in a park will help you unwind and forget the stresses of the day. It has been proven that getting away from the hustle and bustle of city life and getting a bit closer to nature can create a dramatic reduction in stress levels. Just half an hour stroll amongst the greenery, and you will feel yourself slowly becoming calmer.
6. Drink a cup of green tea
One of great tips on how to relieve stress is to drink a cup of tea. A hot drink will help to relax you too, but definitely not one that has caffeine in! One of the best drinks for relaxation is green tea. As well as all the other wonderful health benefits that green tea has, it also contains and an amino acid called theanine, which will reduce the effects of any caffeine that you have consumed during the day and help you relax.
7. Listen to some calming music
Music can be very effective at slowing your heart rate and relaxing you, especially the slower, gentler melodies. Try listening to some music on your way home, or play some tunes while you take your relaxing hot bath. Research has shown that soft music can reduce the heart rate, slow your breathing and lower your blood pressure.
8. Watch something funny
Laughter brings instant stress relief and the effects of a good giggle will last you for a long time. Check out the latest funny video on you tube, or put a comedy program on the TV. Laughter will take your mind off your work problems and it will also make your body release the feel good hormones that will combat the stress hormones in your body.
9. Take more breaks in the day
If you don’t take any breaks during the working day, your stress levels will just keep on building up and up. Take frequent, ten minute breaks at work and you will find it a lot easier to unwind when you get home. It’s also very unhealthy for you to be constantly under pressure, that’s what can lead to high blood pressure and heart problems.
10. Spend time with friends and family
Our final tip on how to relieve stress and take your mind off work is to spend some time with your family, or some good friends. Children are the best ever tonic after a hard day at work. No one can stay stressed for long when they are playing with kids.