15 Oct 5 Ways to Escape Stressful Big City Life
There’s no denying that city life is incredible. But with so much going on, it’s essential to take a step back now and then and give those tired batteries a bit of a recharge. After all, we’re only human, and the human body wasn’t created to be able to keep up with such fast-changing environments. Sometimes, we need to slow down a little, so we can enjoy everything the city has to offer.
The lure of the big city is like nothing else on earth. The bright lights, the career opportunities, the great restaurants, and the bustling, on-the-go atmosphere…it’s no wonder that many people from the country’s more rural regions choose to relocate to the likes of Sydney, Brisbane, and Melbourne. That’s according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, who notes population losses across Central and Northern Australia, as well as small coastal communities, and significant gains in the inner rings of the capitals.
Here are 5 simple ways to find a touch of much-needed relaxation in the heart of all the action:
There is practically unlimited research out there which shows that yoga can help you to unwind, relax, and de-stress – what’s even more impressive is why it helps. Yoga is all about the mind; relaxation is a purely emotional state. So if you’re inclined to think it’s pretty difficult to force your mind to relax amongst the hectic city scene, it’s not true. A research paper published in the Perceptual and Motor Skills journal shows that yoga has a physical impact on the body, reducing levels of the stress hormone cortisol, so you do feel at ease. Not feeling up to a sweaty Vinyasa class, why don’t you try Yin yoga? This gentle practice might be what you need in your life when it’s hectic.
In big cities, it’s never hard to find yoga classes near you. Yoga studios truly are a sanctuary to unwind and recharge. But if you really can’t face heading out into the world without a session, online yoga — which you can do in your own home — is a great alternative. Perfect to sneak in before or after a hectic day.
As we can see from the research above, stress isn’t just an emotion. It’s a physical symptom that can be felt across pretty much the entire body. That’s why, when you get back home from a hectic day, you can feel tight and tense and stiff all over. Caring for a stressed-out body is just as important as caring for a stressed-out mind, so try and find a bit of time to focus on bringing your body back to optimal health. Massage is ideal for this, working on releasing tension in the muscles and encouraging your body to rest. If your body’s focused on tensing the muscles, it can’t do all the other things it needs to do.
While you may be able to massage your arms or hands at home, we think it’s always best to book a massage when you’re feeling stressed so that all those hard-to-reach areas can enjoy a bit of TLC.
Big city life is busy. We get it. The beauty of meditation is that you don’t need to take a lot of time out of your hectic schedule to enjoy its benefits. The best meditation sessions can be squeezed in during your lunch break or even on the bus on the way to work. There’s really no excuse! If you feel like you’re under a bit of city-induced mental or physical pressure, then look for guided meditation sessions that are uniquely designed to relax the mind and body. These sessions help you to lose yourself in mindful thought and escape big city life… even if only for a few moments.
We love this 6-minute guided meditation to de-stress. Perfect for when you’ve just endured rush hour traffic, and are about to head into the office. Stop thinking and wash away that stress head, sit down and drop in. Ready for your big day ahead!
4, Eat Well
How do you cope with the demands of the day? Lots of coffee? Plenty of comforting junk food? Research shows that caffeinated energy drinks and junk food can actually increase feelings of stress, so you may not be doing yourself any favours here. Instead, try eating well. It’s one of the best ways to care for your body and mind, and even just trying to include a few healthy options throughout the week could have a massive impact on how energised you are, how you sleep, and how prepared you are to combat whatever the day throws at you. Junk food just hasn’t got what it takes to keep your body working well.
Try to eat plenty of ‘energising’ snacks with plenty of simple carbohydrates, protein, and good fats to give your body a boost. How about the perfect green smoothie? Super easy to make with all the health benefits. Avoid ‘heavy’ processed foods and bad fats which can make you feel sluggish.
5, Enjoy a Glass of Wine
Wine? Really? Doesn’t having a drink make your body and mind more stressed? It can do. But a glass (or maybe even two!) of wine can have a very relaxing effect that can help you distance yourself from the stresses of big city life and truly unwind. It all comes down to alcohol content. Wine is much less potent than spirits, so it’s easier to reach that ‘calm’ stage of drinking without heading over into the ‘anxiety’ stage. Wine (in moderation, of course) is such a good option for de-stressing that there’s a rapidly emerging ‘wine and yoga’ trend, which sees sessions take place amongst gorgeous vineyards.
You don’t have to venture out to one of Australia’s vineyards to hop on the wine and yoga bandwagon. Pop open a bottle at home and enjoy a glass after a relaxing yoga session to refocus the mind and body.
Optimising Your Routine
The best way to take advantage of these 5 great de-stressing techniques is to try and do them regularly. If you take a bit of time each day to focus on your mind and body and take a few moments away from the ‘every day’, it becomes much easier to find the right balance. Optimise your routine, and try to get into the habit of meditating, eating well, and doing yoga. It will become a natural part of your daily routine faster than you think!
Enjoy city life; there’s nothing like it. But don’t forget about YOU!