7 Out of the Box Ways to Unwind After Work

7 Out of the Box Ways to Unwind After Work

By New York Times bestselling author of Rich Bitch, Nicole Lapin

I’m all about hustling your buns off all day at work, but when you leave the office (even if it is your home office) you need to let yourself mentally decompress. A recent study showed that many women view their homes as second jobs: housework, bills to pay, and a dog to walk, oh my! I know you can handle all of that and then some, but before you dive into job numero dos here are some creative ways to R-E-L-A-X:

Shut It Down

My favorite apps (I know, I know, it sounds counterproductive to download an app to unwind from technology but this is the most fool-proof way to go) for unplugging at the end of the day are: Moment, which allows you to schedule time, say at dinner, to be tech-free; Anti-Social, which lets you schedule a certain amount of time away from social networking sites; Self-Control, with which you can ban yourself from certain sites, like your work email; and Offtime, which is a souped-up version of the others that gives you real data on how longy ou’re on your phone as well as a detailed report of what you missed when you plug back in. And if you don’t want to download anything, the Do Not Disturb icon for iPhones and Priority setting for Android are my favorite price: FREE!

Exercise Your Brain

There are a ton of apps out there that are cheap and help you clear your head so you can get good brain juices flowing. My favorites include: Headspace, which is like a gym for your mind to help you unwind with great programs like Take10; Happier, which offers mediation tips and writing exercises; and Calm, an app that helps you schedule mini relaxation sessions from 2-20 minutes in duration.

Work on Your Side Hustle

We all have a dream, a passion. What would we be doing if we didn’t need money for, you know, LIFE. Is it owning a cupcake shop? Becoming a clothing designer? Learning to be a nail artist? Whatever it is, it’s where your heart is and what you want to be doing in a perfect world. It can happen, but you have to work on it. The best way to do that, ideally, is when you have a job. So get all of your proverbial ducks in a row on the side before you are ready to pounce on making your dream a reality!

Be a Journal-ista

Journaling is a great way to find mindfulness and reset before the next day you’re going to seize. You can do it digitally; I love Day One Journal because for folks without much of an attention span, like me, this is a good way to get something down and even add photos and links to my favorite things. If you want to kick it old school, my favorite is the I Need To Unplug Journal which offers inspirational quotes and prompts to kick your journaling booty in gear!

Be a Podcast Queen

Podcasts are increasing in popularity like crazy. They are also my favorite price: FREE! There are great ones that can help you chill but also step up your career game in humorous, satirical or inspiring ways. My favorites are Spirit Junkie and The School of Greatness. There are others that offer projects and challenges like The Bored and Brilliant Project that gives you daily creativity challenges.

Network With Unusual Workouts

Forget pricey drinks or dinners to network; start your own networking group, like I did. I’m talking cardio trampoline, aerial yoga, pole dancing, even sword fighting! You can find many of these classes on the ClassPass app, which gives you access to unlimited classes in your area with a monthly membership. I created a networking group of women in my industry and set up a different fun and quirky class outing per month. Nothing like bonding while sweating your butt off in a Beyonce dance class to get someone to pull for you at work the next day.

Learn Something New

As Steve Jobs said, sometimes it’s the skills that have nothing to do with your job that help you the most—hence his calligraphy class that led to the fonts we use on our Macs today. It’s easy to stop trying new things when you get into a regular workweek routine. So sign up for something new, like a pottery class, conversational language club, or knife skills class to up your cooking game. A new skill might be just what you need to hit “refresh”—and you’ll meet people outside of your usual circle, too, which is always a helpful thing!


NICOLE LAPIN is the only finance expert you don’t need a dictionary to understand. She got her start in finance at age eighteen, reporting from the floor of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange for First Business Network. She went on to become the youngest anchor ever at CNN and then to claim the same title at CNBC, while contributing financial reports to MSNBC and TODAY. Nicole has also served as a business anchor and special correspondent for Bloomberg Television. She is the money columnist for Redbook, cohost of the entrepreneurial competition show Hatched, and the money saving correspondent for The Wendy Williams Show. She is an Accredited Investment Fiduciary (AIF®). Nicole graduated summa cum laude and valedictorian of her class at Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism.

For more information about the author, visit her at Facebook/NicoleLapin and follow her on Twitter:@nicoleLapin. The paperback of Rich Bitch is out on March 8th, 2016 and is available where books are sold.

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