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How to Decompress After a Stressful Day at Work

Who hasn’t had a stressful day at work?  Particularly for entrepreneurs, stress at work can be a huge part of life.  Building one’s own business from the ground up is exciting, but may also come with fear and anxiety.  Across all businesses and roles, people may have to deal with difficult bosses or co-workers.  And, there may be too much work to even get accomplished in one day.

Amidst these pressures, research has shown that taking 30 minutes or less per day to recenter yourself can be tremendously beneficial, and in particular help with job performance the following day.  Here are some tips for decompressing after work.

Turn off technology.  While most people like to go home and turn on the television or play around online, consider if you were to dedicate some of that time instead towards reflecting on your day.  Look back on the things you’re proud of from your day – What did you accomplish? What are you proud of yourself for?  For this reflection, find a quiet space where you can be by yourself, even if that means just a ten minute shower.  If you’re lucky enough to have a terrace in NYC, spend some time on it with a glass of wine, or take a stroll through the streets and do some window shopping.

Meet up with family or friends for a fun night.  When you’re stressed, it can be difficult to motivate yourself to make time for important people in your life.  This is particularly true for entrepreneurs who often choose to give up personal time to focus their attention on growing their businesses. Having contact with the outside world is not only necessary for your personal sanity – taking a step back can give you the perspective needed to tackle challenges and problems in a way that may be difficult to see when you’re plugged into work.

Read.  If you haven’t had a chance to pick up the paper and see what’s going on in the world, do so.  If you’ve been dying to start a new novel that has piqued your interest, try it.  By reading, you get to immerse yourself in another world – which can be a much needed respite.

Exercise.  While some people are forced to exercise to keep off weight and hate going to the gym, exercise isn’t just about maintaining a healthy body; it’s also about maintaining a healthy mind.  Endorphins from exercise can help boost self-esteem and make you vastly happier.  Slimming down or bulking up is great, but exercise plays another role in our lives that is often more important.

Follow your passions.  Get back in touch with the things you love to do, but often don’t have time for because you’re consumed by work.  Look at old pictures or create a scrapbook.  Turn on a baseball game and cheer on your favorite team.  Take this time to immerse yourself in something you enjoy to have time completely away from the stress of the workplace.

Set aside dedicated relaxation time. While it might not work for everyone, try meditation or yoga.  Or, try lighting some candles and taking a relaxing bubble bath.  “Me” time is important – even if you have a crazy life to come home to with a partner or children, there is a difference between being selfish and putting yourself first – so, put yourself first.

Call up and old friend or write a letter or email to someone you’ve lost touch with.  Reconnecting with people you haven’t had time for in a while due to the high demands of work is important and can only enrich your life.  Also, it’s a great way to vent and discuss the mutual demands of work or just talk about fun things and have some laughs.

Lastly and maybe most importantly, try spending five free minutes making a to-do list of what you plan to get accomplished for the week ahead at work.  While you might want to completely put work out of your head when you come home, if you organize the upcoming week, you’ll feel much less stressed when you do return to work.

Are some of these tips things that help you decompress after a long, stressful day of work? What are your favorite things to do that keep your mind occupied and make you forget about the hassles of work?

Here are some articles you might want to check out about decompressing after work:

“Easy Stress Relief: 5 Ways to Decompress in Just 5 Minutes”: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/24/easy-stress-relief-5-ways_n_3017084.html

“Fresh Ways to Decompress: Stress Busters That Really Work”: http://www.cnn.com/2007/HEALTH/02/08/healthmag.energy.boosters/

“Job Stress? 12 Ways to Decompress”: http://martinamcgowan.com/2012/07/job-stress-12-ways-to-decompress/

To experience office space designed to allow you to decompress while at work, visit Emerge212.