5 Unusual Ways For Parents To Wind Down & Relax

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We all love our children. But that doesn’t mean that being a parent isn’t hard work — and exhausting.

It’s important as a parent to be able to wind down and relax; whether it’s when your little one is asleep or at school, you need to fit in some quality “me” time. But what do you do in this time?

Many of us revert back to what we normally do — catch up on the washing (why does it never end?) or scroll mindlessly through social media until we fall asleep with the light still on.

However, there are all sorts of things you can do to wind down and relax as parents that are more interesting and slightly unusual; read on to find out more.

1) Start blogging

It might not be something you’ve necessarily thought about before, but blogging is a fun way to wind down and relax in the evening.

If you already post on social media and love writing, then starting a blog and creating content is a natural next-step. You don’t need to write crazy long posts and spend hours crafting the perfect copy — it’s your blog and you can do whatever you want with it. Short snappy posts, rambling long articles, plenty of photos… it’s completely up to you, and having this creative power to do whatever you want is pretty exciting.

Blogging is so good for documenting family life — what it’s like to be a parent, some of the struggles you go through with your little ones — and how you overcome them.

Plus, if you’ve had a tough day parenting, then it can be the perfect place to vent and therapeutically unload your emotions — it’s essentially like writing a journal, albeit with more readers (and you might even make some money).

2) Card games

There’s something very satisfying about playing card games, which is why they’re such a good option for unwinding in the evening. Picture this: playing cards in the candlelight with your partner, with a glass of wine and some soothing music in the background. Sounds pretty relaxing, doesn’t it?

Of course, you don’t need to have someone to play cards against. Having a game of Solitaire on your own can be just as satisfying, or you can head online and play against opponents from all over the world.

The rise of online games and casinos has made it easier than ever to relax in the evening playing classic games blackjack or poker without the need to invite your friends over and plan a whole games night — you just need to log on on your computer or phone and you can play instantly.

It’s easy to learn the basics, and if you get really good you can really master certain games, learn card counting strategies and become a successful player. An unusual but fun way to wind down in the evenings after your little ones have gone to bed.

3) Go for a walk in nature

When you’re exhausted from a long day with toddlers and you’ve done what seems like your 70th washing load of the week, going for a walk make seem like the last thing that you would want to do, but hear us out.

Putting your boots on and heading outside for a brisk walk in the fresh air is so good for your general wellbeing; time in nature and green spaces is really beneficial to your brain, and exercise itself — even if it’s just a short walk — has been linked to improved mental health and mood.

It’s up to you where you go and how far you walk. You could just go for a poddle around a nearby park, or head out and find forest trails, beach walks or rolling hills… Wherever you go, it’s a chance to explore the countryside around you (or the urban landscape if you live in a city) as well as wind down away from the kids and the house.

4) Take up arts and crafts

This might not be everyone’s cup of tea, and you might think that this is only something that year 3 children do, but trust us — arts and crafts can be an incredibly satisfying way to wind down.

Crafting is an excellent chance to explore your inner creative and try out something you’ve always wanted to do, whether it’s painting, jewellery-making, crafting your own greeting cards, or even reupholstering old furniture.

Whatever you decide to try out, it’s a nice way to fill your down-time and relax while still feeling like you’ve been productive (something you can struggle with as a parent when you feel like there’s always something to do and if you’re not ticking stuff off, you’re a terrible person).

You can get your other half involved as well and make something together — or invite your friends round for a wine and crafts night. Dreamy.

5) Gardening

As we’ve already mentioned, being outside in green spaces is so good for improving your wellbeing and mood. So why not try gardening to wind down and relax?

Surrounding yourself with nature is a lovely way of reconnecting and recharging while the kids are at school or nursery. Even if you’ve only got one flowerbed or a few pots on the patio, you can get creative with your garden design and nurture the plants that you do have. Plus, you can set yourself challenges, like making something for your children to enjoy, like a sandpit or a treehouse (if you’re up for a bigger challenge).

Enjoy the peacefulness of your garden; listen to the birds chattering around you and embrace the soothing repetition and satisfaction of completing garden tasks like weeding.

When you’re trying to de-stress and relax as a parent, your options aren’t only a Netflix binge or a bubble bath. There are loads of more unusual ways that you can relax — try some of the ideas above, and who knows? You might just discover your perfect unwinding activity.

*this is a collaborative post.

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