How to Relax: 17 Ways to Unwind in No Time

Are you having a day where every little thing is getting on your nerves? Are you one flying Cheerio away from yelling? You are stressed out, but don’t have time to relax? Girl, I have been there. (Daily!) 

If I don’t take the time to decompress, I get a “bit” cranky. It doesn’t take much, but I try to spend at least 10 minutes a day by myself. Afterward, I always feel so much more prepared to handle the craziness that often comes with raising little humans. Below, I’ve rounded up 17 of my favorite ways to relax when I am short on time, but really need to unwind. 

How to Relax

1. Relax with a Bubble Bath

Is there anything more relaxing than a tub full of bubbles? Play your favorite music. Get fancy and light some candles and try not to fall asleep. Or…

2. Take a nap

What mom gets enough sleep at night? Even when my kid sleeps through the night, I always end up staying up until midnight getting stuff done. And my kid is always up before 6. Every. Single. Day. A mid-day nap is sometimes just what the doctor ordered.

3. Paint your nails

This makes it easy to relax. You can’t do much with wet nails. If you have trouble giving yourself a break, grab your favorite polish and take a couple deep breaths. Plus after you’re done, you will have a pretty reminder that you matter too.

4. Put on some makeup

I rarely wear makeup anymore, but every once in a while, I grab some mascara and lip gloss and give myself a couple of minutes to try to cover my under-eye circles. Even if I don’t have anywhere to go, I always feel better when I spend just a little time in the mirror.

5. Grab a fancy coffee

Caffeine is a mom’s best friend. It helps get us out of bed, push through the mid-day slump and stay up long enough to tuck the kiddos into bed. Why not give your coffee a little power up?

Get out of the house and grab a Grande Dark Chocolate Melted Truffle Mocha. (Drool…)

Or if you can’t make it to a coffee shop, stock up on some yummy flavored creamer and pretend a cute barista wrote your name on the cup.

Coffee Break

6. Or brew some tea

I like coffee, but I love me some tea. Green, Black, Chai Latte. Mmmm.

There is nothing more relaxing than brewing and sipping a warm cup of tea.

7. Curl up with a good book

Find a new book and give it a read. You can download an e-book in seconds and don’t even have to get out of your PJs. (The Help and My Sister’s Keeper are my recommendations if you are having trouble choosing a good book.)

Or you could take a trip to the library. My library has a super cool play area that keeps my kid occupied long enough to finish a couple of chapters. Plus the books are free! Can’t beat that.

8. Go outside

Sometimes when you are home all day the walls seem like they start to close in. Even if you just sit on your porch, take a walk around the block or find a park to explore. Turn off your phone, open your eyes and reconnect with nature.

9. Indulge with dessert

Grab a piece of dark chocolate, some cherry pie, or a bowl of ice cream (sprinkles optional). Take a seat, relax, and enjoy every bite that you don’t have to share with any little, grabby hands.

10. Reconnect with the world

Call a friend and catch up. Sometimes I get so caught up in my day-to-day life, that I forget how long it has been since I have talked to a grown up. Between cooking, cleaning, and a whiny toddler, it is hard to find time for an adult conversation. No answer? Send an email or better yet, write a letter and make someone’s day.

11. Act like a kid

Blow some bubbles. Make a mess. Watch cartoons. Let yourself go a bit and embrace your silly, goofy inner child. Adulting is hard and sometimes you need to play.

12. Get creative

Whether you love to draw or write or play an instrument, create something new. Grab an adult coloring book and some crayons and go to town. Play with color or tell a funny story. The sillier the better.

13. Journal

Write down what is going on in your life right now. How are you feeling? Are there emotions that you have been ignoring? Write it down, acknowledge it, and let it go. Staying in a negative space doesn’t help anyone.

14. Meditate

It sounds clique, but it really forces you to spend time with yourself and bring you back to a calm, normal state. Not sure how? YouTube has tons of videos that walk you through it.

15. Yoga

Yoga is a triple threat. It is great for your body, your mind, and your spirit. But to be honest with you, I stink at yoga. I’m uncoordinated and not very flexible. Beginners who try to do too much, too soon can get unpleasant injuries. (Ask me how I know.) Make sure that if you are a newbie, you find a video for absolute beginners.

16. Exercise

Walking, lifting weights, swimming. Pick something and raise your heart rate. It is awesome to help wake you up and has the added benefit of getting you in better shape for when your toddler decides to make a break for it in the middle of Wal-Mart.

17. Crank up the music and dance

Turn up the radio (headphones help if it’s naptime) and rock out. It doesn’t matter if you boot-scoot, head bang, or dance a jig. Pick your tune and move your body. Pull down the blinds and dance like no one is watching.


With everything we do for our family, it’s no wonder we often forget to take care of ourselves. But it is so important to take a few minutes and relax. Forget the dishes, the laundry, the dog hair on the couch for just 10 minutes. Remember that you matter too and your family needs you more than they need a shiny, non-sticky floor. There are 1440 minutes in a day. Take 10 and spend it on you. You deserve it.

These are just a few ideas to get you started but the sky is the limit to how you spend your “mommy time.”


Now it’s your turn.

Let me know in the comments: How do you relax when you only have a few minutes alone?

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  1. McKinzie

    June 22, 2016 at 11:44 pm

    Such a great post Amanda! As busy mamas we need quick ways to unwind.
    I love to turn on some music and just tune everything out for a few minutes. It helps me refocus and relax.

    1. Amanda

      June 23, 2016 at 8:44 am

      Rocking out to some good tunes is one of my favorite things too. 🙂

  2. Bruce

    June 26, 2016 at 5:57 pm

    Being a Mom is hard. Every mother has some different ways to deal with their children. We have seen you interacting with Kai and he is such a happy little boy that what you are doing must be just what he needs.

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