When the day is done all you want to do is relax.

But sometimes it’s hard to leave all the stress of the day behind.

For those times when you need a little extra dose, here are three quick and easy ways to relax after a busy day.

Clench and Release

Did you know you can trick your brain into relaxing? Strange, but true!
Take a deep breath in, clench your muscles as tight as you can, and then let them go as you exhale. This short circuits the signals between your body and your brain.

Mental stress causes your muscles to tighten up, and those tense muscles then send a confirmation signal right back to the brain, “Yep, we’re stressed.” When you clench and let go, your body then tells the brain that it can calm down.

Give it a try, use your hands  and any other muscles that are comfortable to do so.

Breathe… nice and deep

Your breath is one of the most powerful ways to control your stress, tension and anxiety.  It has to do with your vagus nerve, this helps regulate your fight or flight response.

Deep slow breathing increases activity in the vagus nerve, which in turn slows your heart rate down and pushes the brain towards calm.

– breathe in slowly through your nose for a count of six.

– Hold it for a moment, then slowly exhale.

– Repeat a few times and enjoy the calm.

A little help from our friends

Studies have shown that watching a clip of a cute animal has a powerful calming effect, almost as powerful as playing with your own pet.

It’s been shown that it can actually reduce your heart rate and blood pressure in less than a minute!

Maybe that’s why there’s so many baby animal videos on the internet! 😉