It’s no secret that New York has the ultimate climate for stress and anxiety. Residents of the big apple subject themselves to an ungodly amount of hard work; and have to deal with things like rising taxes, tiny apartments, rowdy weekends, jam-packed subways, and a lack of simple pleasures like grass and nature. Some view this as all worthwhile- the charms and lore of the city are too compelling to leave behind. However, when you consider the fact that unusually high levels of stress can lead to premature aging, then the importance of arming yourself with strategies to promote relaxation becomes more apparent. Here are some simple and effective ways to rid yourself of excess stress in New York City.
Tip #1: Expose Yourself to Vegetation
Harvard scientists have discovered that vegetation has calming effects on the human brain. So if you find yourself overwhelmed, try taking a stroll through either Brooklyn Botanic Garden or Central Park. The BBG is located in the Prospect Park neighborhood and features 52 acres of natural scenery. There are specialty “gardens within the Garden,” plant collections, the C. V. Starr Bonsai Museum, three climate-themed plant pavilions, an aquatic plant house, and an art gallery. Central Park is located in middle-upper Manhattan and boasts being the most visited urban park in the United States and one of the most filmed locations in the world. It features 778 acres of natural-looking artificial lakes and ponds, extensive walking tracks, bridle paths, wildlife sanctuaries, natural woods, playgrounds, and an outdoor amphitheater. Both of these parks are ideal areas to leave a long, stressful work week behind and simply let your mind wander. If you can’t make it to a park during the week because of work, then even keeping a plant on your desk or decorating the home with some floral arrangements can lead to some more peaceful vibes.
Tip #2: Soak Up the Sunshine
While too much of the sun’s rays can be harmful to your skin, the right balance can have lots of mood lifting benefits. Exposure to sunlight is associated with an increase in the release of the hormone serotonin- which can lead to a feeling of calm and focus. Take off your shades to let the light filter in through your retina. Even in the autumn season you can still enjoy the sun in New York City. Try taking a stroll around Manhattan or the High Line in Chelsea. This is a great way to take in the sights while stimulating your body and mind.
Tip #3: Indulge Yourself
If you are in desperate need of a serious de-stressing session, and have enough disposable income, one of the best places to turn is an NYC hotel. Book at the InterContinental New York Barclay and sweat the stress away in their sauna and steam room, or try lodging at the Sofitel New York and get lost in a plush feather top duvet mattress system after working off your stress in their state of the art fitness center.