Have we forgotten how to relax?
In today’s rat race that glorifies overworking, it’s easy to fall prey to the mindset that busyness equals better.
After all, that’s what the hustle culture hardwires us to believe: the more you work, the more valuable you are.
With companies dangling the promise of quick promotion or a fat paycheck, logging in an average of 15 work hours a day has become a badge of a “productive employee.”
But contrary to the proponents of this “break is for the weak” mentality, multiple studies suggest that a non-stop grind actually puts people at risk of poor mental and physical health.
Elevated stress levels cause the body to produce abnormal amounts of cortisol—the stress hormone associated with anxiety, depression, heart disease, memory impairment, and other toxic effects.
Thankfully, it is possible to avoid falling into the hustle culture trap by being more mindful of slowing things down.
Here are a few tips on resetting your rhythm and taking that much-needed breather!
Set a hard stop
While sounding counter-intuitive, setting boundaries can actually make you more productive by preventing burnout.
Hard stops give your body and mind time to recharge for another day ahead.
Setting a hard stop may prove challenging if you are accustomed to working long hours, but it will help if you come to terms that you can work 24/7 non-stop and still end up with more work to do.
Unplug and Play
Decompress after a hard day’s work by unwinding with loved ones for a cozy dinner or movie night.
Or, schedule a quick weekend get-away to refill your happy hormones.
After all, nothing beats being with people you love to take your mind off work.
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Hop on an adventure
Stave off burnout with a good vacation.
Sometimes, all we need is a change of scenery to help us refocus and reconnect with our inner selves.
People who take regular time to relax are likely more creative and productive than their over-worked, under-rested counterparts.
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Get your body moving
It’s been proven countless times: that exercise comes with a myriad of benefits.
Simple routines like a mid-day stretching, an after-work jog around the park, or a weekend trip to the gym are all great ways to hit the work snooze button.
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Mind your mind
Start journaling. Take a new hobby. Catch up on sleep.
Taking care of your mental health is equally important as caring for your body.
Mental wellness restores your body, improves concentration, regulates mood, and sharpens your judgment.
You’ll even become a better problem-solver when well-rested.
Take the “How Stressed Are You?” and “How Well Are You Sleeping?” online assessments in the AIA Vitality app and earn points along the way.
Be intentional in taking care of yourself.
Remember, there is more to life than work.
Finding the perfect balance between work and play can stop the manic hustle dead in its track and let you focus on one thing that matters most—your health!
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