SUMMER IS OVER. Okay, well not officially, but unofficially it is with the passing of Labor Day, and we have to acknowledge that Fall is here. The weather is already trying to stake her claim on Summer’s territory and I’m not hating the change in temperature but using it as an excuse to wind down with buttery whites and richer red wines from JaM Cellars.
Part of my personality is that I seem to operate under the optimistic outlook that I can do everything and fit everyone in to my schedule. In turn, I end up stretching myself thin and running out of time to just chill. Don’t get me wrong, I love being busy, after all, idle hands do the devil’s bidding, so I like to keep my mind constantly engaged and challenged whether that be with conversation, activities, reading, studying, etc. But when it comes to winding down I’ve devised some procedures to get me relaxed quickly so I can maximize my chill-out time and minimize my anxiety.
5 Ways to Quickly Wind Down
One. Turn off your distractions.
Technology is both a blessing and a curse. We’re surrounded by so many great ways to improve our livelihood and provide entertainment, we often end up being too connected. The news is always distressing, social media fills us with anxiety that we’re not being our best selves, etc etc. So step one is to turn it all off for at least an hour. Turn on some relaxing instrumental music (like City of the Sun) or just enjoy some quiet time.
Two. Make something to eat.
I don’t know about you, but when I’m hungry I’m distracted. If I haven’t been properly fed, or if my stomach is reaching empty, I get cranky and cannot focus on my tasks, my thoughts get erratic, everything gets on my nerves, so I try to properly feed myself often. When I get home I like to make myself a hearty snack, typically some sort of fruit or veggie based dish brimming with flavor. I’m a big fan of late summer fruit bruschetta’s (like this recipe here for Peach basil and blackberry thyme bruschetta).
Three. Grab a Glass (or two) of Wine
I really find it quite a treat to come home and pour a glass of wine after a long day. Nothing erases stress quite as quick as a melt-in-your-mouth Butter Chardonnay or luscious JaM Cellars Cabernet while listening to some music, windows flung open and letting the breeze and city life noises creep through a cracked window. This is my first time trying JaM Cellars but it won’t be the last due to their traditional style of California winemaking, great price point (under $20) and luxurious taste. I love how the Butter Chardonnay has some depth to it and pairs excellently with stone fruit (like peaches, nectarines, and plums) but then to contrast it, the JaM Cabernet is mellow and full of berries which make it an excellent addition to blackberries. I love that one bottle of wine from them will last me a week and is diverse enough for me to pair with a variety of dishes.
Four. Grab a Book.
As an avid reader and lifelong introvert, I find a lot of comfort in winding down with a book. It’s the polite way of telling people “please don’t talk to me, my nose is stuck far too deep in this spine for any sort of conversation.” I have a growing stack of books that I try to get through quickly, but my extrovert tendencies always find some sort of social distraction. I counter this by making time to sit down and read a few pages, whether it be on the train, or before bed, I try to flip through a couple of pages to lose myself in someone fictional character’s problems than my own.
Five. Take a Walk.
Sometimes I find myself so wound up that being inside only adds to my distress. Even though the act of exercising can wind you up, sometimes I feel like a quick walk outside to the mailbox or even around your block/ culdesac, helps clear my head. I’m thrust into the elements and out of my head to take time to enjoy the things around me.
While I thought that summer was going to be my busiest season, it turns out that Fall is gearing up to be another crazy three months so I’ll have plenty of time to employ and perfect these tips, with maybe one (or two) extra glasses of JaM Cellars Cabernet along the way and this summer slow down with an easy drinking cab!
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.