The above photo is an unfiltered picture I took in Brooklyn after getting off the train. Anyways, let's talk relaxation. Are you doing it right? Yes, I believe there is a right and wrong way to relax. A lot of us still don't know how to turn our brains off at night. Or even how to just sit and be in the moment. Let's change that. I made a lil checklist to help you establish your own evening routine to help you maximize your relaxation and truly reset. It's quite simple really - focus on the 5 senses.
Most great nights start with a tasty, wholesome meal. We normally order in - Thai, Mediterranean, Chinese - but I have been trying to cook more lately. Not only to be healthier but to save a little money and combat laziness. If you ever need ideas for a meal, check out my recipes.
2. Clean up
I don't mean to say you need to go on a cleaning spree every night but simply clean up after yourself and straighten up your living area. It's the equivalent of making your bed during your morning routine (I will post an updated one of those soon!). When you wake up, you will be waking up to a clean slate. Literally.
I pride myself in a great skincare routine, morning and night, but there is something extra special about your night time skincare routine. Your skin, and the rest of your body and mind for that matter, reset and recharge when you sleep. I try to do my skincare routine right before going to sleep that way there is minimal activity between prepping my skin and actually sleeping.
4. Comfy, cozy, cool
Remember the 3 Cs - Comfy: comfy clothes or lack of clothes, if you prefer. Personally, I sleep in minimal clothing because it makes me the most comfortable. Cozy: blankets, pillows, bed, stuffed animals, the works. Make it your own. Cool: temperature, yes. Nothing sucks worse than trying to sleep in sweltering hot conditions.
5. Sweet smells
I love my essential oil diffuser! I prefer non-toxic scents in my home. Whether it be soy candles or essential oils, this is a key part to my evening routine. I set up diffusers in the bedroom and living room to provide an all around soothing spa-like experience. Mix lavender, lime and eucalyptus oil for a quick mental trip to the spa.
6. Warm drinks
I don't do this one every night but it helps. A cup of tea or decaf coffee if that's your jam - it'll help relax you from the inside out.
7. Calm your mind
This step is crucial in how you sleep and how you wake up. There are a few ways to calm your mind - meditation, journaling, potting plants, singing, yoga. Do one or a few and focus only on your current activity while doing so!
Color therapy, or chromotherapy, is a practice that uses color and light to treat physical or mental health. While I may not be 100% sure this is effective, I do know that using my LED strip lights provides me the most amazing sense of calm when in bed. I turn these on as soon as I am in the bedroom, choose a color that makes me feel calm at the moment and fall into an almost hypnotic state of relaxation.
9. Shut off electronic devices
This is a hard one for me when it comes to television. My phone, not so much an issue. I actually look forward to not having to be on my phone. I turn my phone on 'Do Not Disturb' usually before I even hit the bed. As for tablets, TVs and other devices, it is best that you turn these off soon before you go to bed. Especially if you love crime television like yours truly.
10. Laugh, cry, unwind
To top it all off, enjoy your night! Call love ones or cuddle with your significant other. Cry if you need to! We often see crying as weakness and try to hold it in and that is the worst thing you could do - let it out! You'll feel better I promise. Overall, the main focus here is to focus on yourself and taking care of your body and mind for the ultimate relaxing evening routine.
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