lifestyle

Time Management: 10 Stress Relieving Hobbies That Improve Productivity

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Time Management—When you evaluate your "me time" and your hobbies—what you do in your time off—what tops your list? And, do those things relieve or increase your stress?

Choosing stress-relieving actvities—those that help calm you down, give you time to think, help you gain perspective, get your endorphins up, and get your creative juices flowing—can actually increase your productivity.

10 Stress-Relieving Hobbies That Can Increase Your Productivity

Check out these 10 ideas for relieving stress and focusing on what matters most:

1. Clean. Having an organized house and office in and of itself can be calming. But, doing the actual cleaning can be a healthy distraction as well as boost your endorphins.

2. Cook. Personally, I like the creativity and the stress-relieving process of cooking. I love to make up recipes, combining different ingredients for awesome results. And my favorite? I love to chop vegetables. I find something very stress relieving about it. Veggie trays are my favorite to make!

3. Exercise. Working out has several benefits. I love the natural high I get as well as spending an hour listening to upbeat music.

4. Play calming music. Whether you put on a CD or play a musical instrument, making time to play some softer songs has a calming effect on any environment.

5. Spend time by yourself or with loved ones. I don't know anything more welcoming than being around people who love you precisely because of who you are.

6. Travel. Exploring foreign places, even within your own city or state, can be exciting, fun, and at the same time, stress relieving.

7. Write. Writing comes in so many forms: blogging, journaling, scrapbooking, creative writing, writing a book, emailing, texting, writing thank you cards by hand, and more. For me, journaling helps me get perspective and make more well thought out decisions.

8. Spend time in nature. My happy spot is a local flower garden called Thanksgiving Point. I can be having the toughest day in the world and have it all wash away after a couple of hours in that place.

9. Get some sun. If I'm too busy, don't have a lot of time, but need to lose the stress and a boost in productivity, I will often go lay on the trampoline and soak up the sun. Even 15 minutes can make all the difference in my day!

10. Ponder. Focusing on areas other than those that bring stress into your life is a quick way to reduce stress. Activities that allow you to ponder can include prayer, mediation, yoga, and others. Make time for this every day and watch your productivity increase.

Aside from adding stress reducing hobbies, one of the most important things you can do to relieve stress in your life and to be more productive is to remove stress-increasing relationships and activities when possible.

What are your favorite hobbies and activities that help you reduce stress? How does making time for yourself help you to be more productive?

Photo courtesy of  Flickr.

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An active part of the Mom It Forward team, Jyl primarily writes about parenting, social good, and all things travel related. In a past life, Jyl was an award-winning copywriter and designer of corporate training programs for Fortune 100 companies. Offline, Jyl is married to @TroyPattee; a mom to two teen boys and a beagle named #Hashtag; loves large amounts of cheese, dancing, and traveling; and lives in the beautiful Rocky Mountains. Topping her bucket list is the goal to visit 50 countries by the time she's 50.

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