Relaxing your whole self — mind, body, and soul — can help you live a full life. We look at some soothing ways to do this.

Taking care of your health is important, but not everyone realizes that this includes relaxing all parts of yourself. Improving your overall well-being can help you live a fulfilling and meaningful life.

Resting and relaxing are essential to your health, and you’ll likely notice a drastic improvement in your life when you begin to prioritize yourself.

With so many different ways to relax, it helps to learn specific methods. As you read through this list you can see what appeals to you and consider adding them to your routine.

Sometimes, your thoughts start swirling and you don’t know how to stop them. When this happens the best thing you can do is to find a way to relax your mind, and there are many tips to choose from.

1. Talk with someone you trust

Talking with a trusted friend or loved one is one of the most effective ways to relax your mind. Whatever is bothering you, talking it through can help you process your feelings.

The support of loved ones who know you and want what’s best for you can make all the difference. Your loved one might also provide helpful ideas to help you manage stress.

2. Deep breathing

Deep breathing exercises can help you clear your mind and refocus on the essential parts of your life. If you need to relax your mind, consider turning to deep breathing exercises to soothe your worries.

When you have stressful or anxious feelings it’s common to experience rapid, shallow breathing or shortness of breath. Taking slow, deep breaths can ease your stress response and help soothe your nervous system.

A 2017 study supports deep breathing for relaxing the mind as experts find that it reduces cortisol levels. Increased cortisol is inked with stress, and reducing your cortisol can help you relax.

3. Mindful meditation

Meditation is an evidence-based way to reduce stress. There are many ways to meditate, and you don’t have to limit yourself to just one.

Meditation helps you focus on the present moment and allows you to limit distraction. It reduces stress by stopping the thoughts that disrupt your peace. A disruptive mindset can interfere with your mood and productivity, so learning to focus your thoughts is helpful.

If you’ve never meditated before, remember that it takes practice. It helps to start with five minutes at a time, trying to keep your mind focused on breathing. Your mind will likely drift, and when it does, gently pull it back to your breathing.

4. Visualization

Visualization can go along with meditation.

To practice visualization you might imagine a peaceful place in your mind, focusing all your thoughts and energy on it. The location will be restful, calming, safe, and make you feel peaceful and happy.

Focus on the details of the place as you breathe steadily through your nose. You might take 10 to 20 minutes to do this whenever you need to relax your mind.

5. Cognitive restructuring

Cognitive restructuring is an aspect of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) that helps you learn to relax your mind. It encourages better habits that limit your stress response. You might sometimes react strongly to things that aren’t a true threat, and restructuring your thoughts can help you perceive things more realistically.

6. Listen to music

Listening to music helps you relax your mind by distracting you from worrying thoughts. This might look like playing your favorite songs and singing or dancing along — or you might listen to a relaxing piece of music to soothe your mind. Choose something you can listen to so that your other thoughts fade away.

Relaxing your body allows your body and mind to recover from the stress response. When you develop an unhelpful mindset, it’s a sign that it’s time to relax your body. Using these techniques before negativity takes over can prevent stress from interfering with your well-being.

7. Do something creative

Creativity can help you feel calm and relaxed. When you need to relax your body, try taking some time to enjoy yourself through creative activities. Consider activities like:

  • painting
  • drawing
  • crafts
  • playing an instrument
  • baking
  • sewing
  • dancing

8. Progressive muscle relaxation

Progressive muscle relaxation involves relaxing all of the muscles in your body. You tense and relax one muscle group at a time, starting with your face and head.

From there, you move up until you’ve relaxed your entire body. This exercise is a good stress relief method to use when you’re falling asleep.

9. Take a break from your to-do list

Sometimes the best way to relax your body is to take a break from your tasks. Life gets busy, and caring for yourself is hard if you’re always on the move.

Consider taking some time to do things you enjoy, like reading a book or taking a bath. You might do some gardening, go for a walk, or do anything else that helps you destress.

10. Exercise

Many people don’t think of exercise as a way to relax, but it helps relieve stress — and relieving stress reduces muscle tension and anxiety. You’ll be able to clear your mind and take a moment to refocus.

11. Improve your diet

When you frequently eat non-nutritious foods, research says you might notice mental health effects. When you want to look after your body, consider introducing more whole foods. Limiting sugar and processed foods can help maintain hormone levels, promoting positive mental health.

12. Yoga

Yoga is one of the best methods of relaxing your mind, body, and soul. It’s a stretching exercise that helps you focus on the present moment and clear your mind. Yoga eases pain and improves overall fitness while also helping you destress. You can find some yoga poses for anxiety here.

Relaxing your soul requires taking time to listen to your heart. It means letting go of worrisome thoughts or other stressors so you can reaffirm what truly matters.

13. Do something for someone else

You might need a break from the stress of your own life to relax. In this case, doing something for someone else can make a difference. Consider finding a person or an organization you can help, putting your energy into positivity so your soul can rest.

14. Take a break from technology

Electronics can help you feel connected to others, but they can also disrupt your well-being. Too much screen time can contribute to stress, procrastination, and distractions. Taking a break can help give you rest and get back in touch with the universe.

15. Get outside

Spending time in nature is one of the best ways to relax your soul. Leave your phone at home as you soak in every bit of the outdoors. You might go for a walk, work in your garden, or find a relaxing place to rest and get in touch with your soul.

16. Start a gratitude journal

Thinking about the good parts of your life can help you put things into perspective. It can help you think about joyful experiences rather than stress, promoting an improved sense of well-being. Writing in a gratitude journal can help you shift your mindset and find the peace you desire.

17. Tell yourself you did enough

You don’t have to cross everything off your to-do list or constantly learn something new. Sometimes your soul needs a break, and you must recognize the need. Let go of knocking out one more task and leave room for soul relaxation.

18. Focus on something you can control

Letting go of what you can’t control is one of the best things you can do for your soul. You can do this by focusing on what you can control, including things like decluttering your space.

Even better, try listening to music while you declutter or organize things. There’s no reason not to combine forms of relaxation.

Relaxing your whole self paying attention to your needs and desire. Try choosing one or two ideas from each section to try first. You can add more methods later or switch it up if one doesn’t work for you. Consider this time to embrace the benefits of relaxation and self-care.