Life is full of stressors, and can therefore be quite stressful. You don’t have to be a CEO (or a parent of five children) to be sufficiently stressed out either. We’ve got romantic, financial, familial, social, professional, and even spiritual aspects of life — and any one of them can blow up in our faces without a moment’s notice — perhaps leading to unpleasant anxiety and stress.

To be clear, we aren’t psychologists here at The Legends Luxury Apartments in Hickory, NC. We are merely hosts to the most prestigious apartment community in the Hickory area. Still, we like to use this column, blog space, or whatever you’d like to call it to provide value to our readers, whether you happen to be considering life at The Legends Apartments of Hickory or simply found our website by chance!

We hope it’s the former rather than the latter, as we are quite fond of showcasing our Hickory apartments that combine award-winning prestige with luxury and elegance in a way you won’t be able to find elsewhere in Hickory. We have been voted the BEST apartment community in the Hickory, NC area, by the Hickory Daily Record, in both 2012 and in 2016 (it seems like we are due for another award pretty soon, doesn’t it!?). We are confident that folks who are looking for style and elegance in a 1, 2, or 3 bedroom suite will be pleased with our fireplaces, crown molding, vaulted ceilings, and a host of upscale amenities that we offer here at our Hickory luxury apartments. If you are interested in a live tour of our apartment community, don’t hesitate to schedule one at your convenience!

Relaxing Hobbies That Are Apartment Friendly

Now that we’ve said our piece regarding what our Hickory apartment complex has to offer, we’d like to transition to what we promised to address in this post’s title — offering up some apartment-friendly hobbies that will help you de-stress. Again, we aren’t therapists or anything of the sort, so excuse the pop psychology this post is arguably littered with. Ultimately, we’d like our residents (and readers in general) to be their best possible selves, and obviously appropriate self-care is a significant part of that equation. Given our endlessly busy lifestyles and a palatable lack of time to decompress while simply sitting with ourselves these days, we thought it might be helpful to offer up a few ideas to help take you away from Instagram, Twitter, and whatever other time-sucks that might be polluting your ability to be your ideal self!

Enjoy!

Puzzles

There are two hemispheres of the brain — a fact that we are sure many of our readers already know. You might also know that, roughly put, the right brain involves emotions while functioning conceptually while the left brain is more linear in its operations. There are a few different studies, such as “The MacArthur Study,” which recommend that folks who perform jigsaw puzzles (along with crossword puzzles and being fully active) were more likely to have a longer lifespan, and less likely to get Alzheimer’s or experience dementia or memory loss.

Most of our residents at The Legends aren’t in their retirement years, so that first point is perhaps more interesting than practical at this point. But consider this one: doing puzzles and focusing on similar images for long periods of time might be a kind of meditation. They lead to a distinct calmness and peace of mind because the mind is focused on one thing — the image in front of you. This will naturally exclude everything else around you, allowing you to achieve tranquility without disturbance. Unless you abhor puzzles for some reason, we’d even go so far as to recommend setting up your break room with a puzzle so you can clear your head from time to time at work! Short breaks can go a long way.

Doing a puzzle now and then can lower our heart rate, breathing rate, and blood pressure as well, so there are physical benefits to speak of alongside cognitive and emotional/spiritual factors. Beyond that, doing puzzles helps our creativity and our concentration, making us sharper and more alert in a general sense. As you can tell, there’s a lot to be said for turning the TV off, putting your phone in another room, and taking some time (with or without a significant other or friend) to work on a good old-fashioned jigsaw puzzle!

Painting

Painting is an activity you can do just as easily outdoors in the countryside or in your Hickory apartment at The Legends. Even if you can merely draw stick figures, and perhaps you find yourself struggling with those, there are more than enough videos you can find online to help you with the basics so you can enjoy yourself while painting. You don’t need to be Van Gogh over here, just draw or paint something that you don’t hate looking at while challenging yourself with some simple designs at the same time.

But why paint in the first place? Well, there are more than a couple of reasons. Cultivating your creative side is one, while the cognitive benefit of improving memory is another. Beyond that, painting helps you foster an optimistic attitude while building problem-solving and motor skills at the same time!

Painting is a major stress-reliever as well, a point that pertains to this blog more than the other benefits. Painting, along with a plethora of other artistic endeavors leads to stress relief, letting you take your mind off whatever might be vexing you in favor of tapping into some major self-worth reserves. Having a lower stress level leads to a healthier, happier state of mind and lifestyle. This helps improve overall mental health.

Listening To Music

Many of our residents at The Legends work in Atlanta, which means they spend a hefty chunk of the day commuting. Often, they drive themselves. Being in the car, often stuck in heavy traffic, can be fairly stress-inducing over time. It might sound overly simplistic, but listening to your favorite music (not just whatever your music app decides is your favorite music) can actually take away much of the tension you experience during your commute. Consider playing some songs you haven’t listened to for a long time as well. This can remind you of your past and all the experiences and memories you associate with a particular song or album.

Clearly, listening to music you love can improve your mood right off the bat, but there are more benefits than just that! Studies show that music with a strong beat can lead to brain waves resonating in sync with a given beat. When the beat is fast, it promotes increased concentration and alertness, while slower beats lend themselves to a more calming, meditative state of mind. Consider listening to slower music at the end of the day if you are interested in de-stressing!

Beyond that, listening to music has been studied for its propensity to help lower blood pressure, slow breathing, slow heart rate, activate the relaxation response, and even induce a more positive state of mind — something which helps stave off anxiety and depression. What’s more, you don’t have to be “active” when you listen to music, like you need to be when painting or doing a puzzle. Sure, the former two activities aren’t exactly running a marathon, but there is something to be said about putting on your favorite Joni Mitchell album and letting the old girl take you to a much better state of mind.

Consider The Legends!

We hope that you’ve enjoyed part one of this two-part series about some practical activities you can employ to help you de-stress after (or during) a busy day. Remember, living in a serene, beautiful apartment complex can go a long way toward improving your satisfaction with daily life. So if you are looking for apartments for rent in Hickory, we recommend you consider The Legends. Schedule your tour today!