When We Unwind

When the body screams for rest, do you listen to it?

Busy months. They seem to creep up unexpectedly. My summers are normally full of travel, but this year saw me hanging around Philly for most of it. After staying put for a minute, I forgot that a touring life can become hectic. Fun, but damn — it’s tiring. I booked that Costa Rica vacation pretty last-minute, and didn’t realize that I’d allotted myself only two days at home before jetting out to Austin for ACL. Although vacation is by definition a time to relax and recharge, sometimes it can feel like just the opposite. Stepping away from a normal routine carries an underlying shock effect.

I try to pack in as much as possible. If I catch myself watching TV, or lounging inside the hotel or house for too long, it’s time wasted that could be better spent experiencing new surroundings. Maybe it’s just a bad case of FOMO, but I have a hard time when it comes to shutting off and getting rest. I’m the type who likes to be on the go and in the presence of others. It’s in my nature to always be “doing”, but my fault is that I don’t listen to my body when it’s warning me that i’m overdoing it.

When I woke up to make a 5am flight to Austin last week, I had well passed the warning signs. The combination of 8 days in Costa Rica, lack of sleep, being overworked and stress made me feel so disconnected from time and reality. I so looked forward to being forced to sit on that airplane and catch a bit of sleep. TIP: Always score a window seat if you’re trying to get some rest. Bundle up a jacket and wedge it between your head and the side of the plane for the closest thing you’ll have available to a bed. It’s not Tempur-Pedic, but it’ll get the job done.

Maybe downtime on an airplane shouldn’t be the only place to embrace doing nothing, however. I could take this opportunity to talk through what I think are the best ways to unwind, but I’d rather hear what you all have to say.

How to you bounce back after days on the road or up in the air? How do you allow yourself peace and quiet? How do you unwind? 

Tips, tricks, stories, secrets…all are welcome in the comments below! Please do share :)



More inspiring posts from the BLDG 25 Blog.

Follow Jana on Twitter and Instagram.


  1. This is me–and I’m still struggling with allowing myself to relax and wind down most of the time too. However, when I am really stressed out and think I don’t have time for anything but work, I go to my favorite yoga class. I often almost tell myself that I am too busy to go, but when I go and allow myself to concentrate and only think about enjoying my yoga class, it allows me the clarity after class to focus on other things I need to get done.

  2. My body always beats my mind, in fact, most of my sleeping time I can’t even sleep because of my thoughts’ not going anywhere! Its quite exhausting sometimes… By the way, I’m a huge fan of your blog, don’t forget to step by mine!
    Nazlıgül | on my own way

  3. I think the thing that puts me right after being away or just being out of my home, busy with work, or whatever, is just to take some time to slowly, but with focus, put everything back in its place, so – unpacking bags even if it’s just my purse or daily backpack, putting things away, folding up clothes that have been thrown in the corner. Having a tidy room makes me feel relaxed and like I can take on something new because the “old” is filed away.

  4. Hibernation is a real alternative to cold mornings – warmest place is bed – dream, plan, doze, snuggle. No need to jump out early, just relax and burrow under that duvet – award yourself a lie in and let the world hurry past.

  5. I find just spending quiet time with loved ones towards the end of the day allows me to relax. The lack of expectations to converse or be doing something but still have that support really helps me let my guard down.

  6. I like to just BE. I like to sit outside in nature and just reconnect with the world around and within me. We are human, but we are also mammals and we go through cycles of high and low energy, rest and activity. We need that balance to survive and simply just being at one with our own thoughts, the world around us and switching off our phones for an hour or two can make the world of difference. Without these kinds of breaks I know I would really lose it! I read Tarot for many people and hear many stories and pick up a lot of energy, so being outside and just pressing my inner “refresh” button is my way of spending well earned and needed down time.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.