Too often when we take days off from work it’s because we have got something planned. Whether you’re going on holiday, going for a long day out or taking care of some DIY around the house, annual leave is usually focussed around activities.
Of course there is nothing wrong with being busy, but this can also mean that neglecting one of the other important reasons to have time off: relaxation.
It’s important to spend some of your time off relaxing and recharging rather than filling it up with things to do. So book off a few random days that you can set aside as a chance to really chill out. It will make you feel better and it can even give you a productivity boost when you return to work.
But once you’ve got that time off, exactly what should you do with it?
For everyone, the idea of relaxation is different, but to get you started here are six great ways to help you recharge and feel rejuvenated with your time off.
1. Go offline
Here’s something for you to think about: when was the last time that you went for a day without the internet? That means no work emails, no social media, no messaging and no apps. For many of us, the internet is intertwined with our whole lives. And while it is good to feel connected and up-to-date, it also means that you never truly switch off.
So why not take yourself offline? For your next day off, completely exclude yourself from the internet. Switch off your Wi-Fi, set your phone aeroplane mode and remove any other internet-based temptations from your line of sight. Focus instead on offline activities – do some reading or something creative like drawing.
Another great way to spend your relaxation day is baking. This could be done in conjunction with your offline day – just make sure you’ve got the recipe on paper, otherwise you’ll be reaching for your phone or tablet. Whether you’re creating a delicious cake or a humble loaf of bread, baking is highly cathartic and rewarding. There’s nothing quite like sitting down with something that you’ve baked and enjoying it; you could even invite a few friends round to share if you’re feeling generous.
3. Have a spa day
If you want to relax but would also love to get out of the house, a day at the spa can be the perfect choice. Visit a top quality spa hotel like Wickwoods and enjoy a wide variety of treatments from pedicures and manicures to massages and facials. Is there any better way to recharge yourself than with a session of ultimate pampering? Most spas also have a range of facilities include Jacuzzis and swimming pools for a full day at leisure.
4. Finish a project
Another fantastic way to relax is to get something off your mind, so take this opportunity to finish a project. This could be anything – whether you’ve been meaning to reorganise a bookcase or get through the third Godfather film. Tick a few things off your list of things to do. You’ll feel much better for it.
5. Get outside
Getting outside and connecting with nature is one of the ultimate ways to relax on your day off. You’ve got plenty of options to choose from – you could head to the park to do some reading or even enjoy a hike through the countryside. Once again this depends entirely on your idea of a good time, you might enjoy a few hours of quiet birdwatching or it could be that you would much prefer a beginners kayaking session beginners kayaking session or an advanced whitewater paddling at Nahanni River. There’s no wrong answer, as long as it’s worth it for you.
6. Book a night in a hotel
It’s something that doesn’t often occur to people; you can have a great day off by spending it in a hotel. If you book a night into a hotel you are effectively giving yourself an entire day off from everything – that means no household chores, no need to worry about washing up and nothing to take care of. This could be the ultimate day off.
And when you're ready to return to work you may like my blog post 5 ways to manage your time effectively when working from home