Life can be hectic. Long hours at the office, children’s extra-curricular activities, bills, social engagements, additional study. All of these things and more can raise stress and anxiety levels fast.
Creating a place to chill out isn’t just relaxing, it’s important for your health, relationships, and general well-being.
So for this week’s blog we decided to discuss our five favourite ways of making an ambient and relaxing outdoor space. It’s often easier, faster and more affordable than you might think.
Step 1: Make a Meditation Space
Traditional meditation has been used as a method of stress relief and relaxation for centuries and today more studies than ever are confirming its benefits.
The patio is the perfect place to make your very own meditation space too. It’s open, with plenty of fresh air, and surrounded by the ambience of nature; all ideal elements for supporting mindfulness.
Your space doesn’t need to be complicated. In fact simpler is often better. But we recommend a mat for comfort, keeping the area clean and free from clutter, and minimising any distractions – don’t be afraid to leave your mobile phone inside!
Step 2: Get Active on the Patio
A little exercise can make a big difference. Starting your day with light exercise boosts your mood, raises your energy levels and can help to combat common health conditions.
Try doing 30 minutes of yoga or pilates. Both take up very little space and are a terrific way to kick start your morning. Weight-training, and calisthenics such as push-ups and squats can also be ideal.
Even something as simple as stretching can help to alleviate aches and muscle pains. There are numerous free guides online, as well as applications for your smartphone that can help you to plan your outdoor workout.
Step 3: Work on a Creative Project
Working on a creative project can be rewarding as well as calming.
You don’t need to be an expert. The purpose of a creative project isn’t just to make a finished product. It’s also about distracting your mind from worries and concerns, and focusing your energy in a constructive way.
Some good ideas include: painting and sketching, building models or DIY kits for around the house, as well as reading and writing.
This is something you can do by yourself or with family and friends. Sometimes a bit of company is what you need to get the creative juices flowing.
Step 4: Take a Nap
Whilst it may not be practical every day, catching some extra sleep on a lazy Saturday afternoon is pretty much the best way to unwind and refresh. A short 30 minute nap can make you feel relaxed and rejuvenated.
So take time out in the hammock or on the couch. Try to keep noise to a minimum, and preferably rest in the shade, the last thing you want to wake up with is sunburn!
If you have trouble sleeping during the day, try listening to music or reading a good book beforehand. Also avoiding screens such as those from tablets and mobile devices can help to make you feel more restful.
Step 5: Invest in Good Furniture
While more expensive than the other steps on this list, the right outdoor seating can make a huge difference to the tranquility of your patio.
Whether you prefer a hanging seat for sitting upright, a hammock for lounging, or a combination of the two in a patio couch, choosing the appropriate seating is vital for building your outdoor relaxation space.
Common symptoms of stress include muscle aches and pains, so when selecting your outdoor seating, think about your body, and what kind of support is best for you. Back support cushions are also available from a number of home and outdoor stores.
What do you think?
So that’s our five step guide to outdoor relaxation! How did we do? Will these tips be helpful for you and your lifestyle? Or do you have other ways of relaxing outdoors? We’d love to hear your thoughts on our Facebook page!
For more on patios, decks and outdoor areas, check out our other blogs by clicking on the link below.