Outdoor activity and fresh air can help lower stress

Declutter & De-Stress | Relaxing Things To Do in Toronto

Published: January 12, 2023

Let’s face it, life can be stressful. With the new year upon us, there is no better time to destress and set new goals for the future. Within Toronto, there are many ways to relax and recharge at spas, yoga studies, meditation centres, and by spending time in the great outdoors. If your new year includes travel plans, UP Express will help alleviate stress when it comes to getting to and from the airport quickly and conveniently on our trains equipped with comfortable seating, complimentary Wi-Fi, and roomy luggage racks. No matter if you want to de-stress at home or on vacation, with these helpful tips, you can look forward to a more relaxing, healthier, and happier 2023.

Declutter And Get Organized

Create physical and mental space by decluttering and organizing in the new year

Out with the old and in with the new can be your motto for the new year. Now is the perfect time to re-evaluate your space and get organized. Ditch those unnecessary items taking up space in your surroundings by tidying up your home, selling and donating clothing you don’t wear, books you won’t read again, and household goods and furniture you don’t need. Need a hand finding new space in your home for those items you can’t part with? Get organized with unique storage containers, boxes, portable filing cabinets and binders, and shelving to help you keep clutter-free in 2023.

Indulge In Some Self-Care

One of the best ways to destress is to carve out some time for self-care. Whether that’s something simple like a hot bath with Epsom salts, a daily break for some journaling, a relaxation massage, or cozying up with a good book, taking a much-needed timeout for yourself can help you relax and refocus. Other indulgent self-care treats include a visit to one of Toronto’s top spas like Othership, an ice bath and sauna circuit that will leave you feeling recharged, located a short distance from UP Express Union Station. The large 50-person sauna also offers space to connect with others on their wellness journey as it hosts guided group meditation and breathing programmes.
At Stackt Market, you’ll find Toronto’s first outdoor wellness playground. Open until April, Unbounded Well features Scandinavian saunas, cold plunge pools, firepit lounges and breathwork classes to help you unwind after a busy day exploring the city.
Exploring a new hobby is also a great way to destress, have fun, and learn something new in the process. Try your hand at baking, join a recreational sports team, take an art class, join a virtual book club – the endless possibilities can help take your mind off of major stressors.

Get A Good Night’s Sleep

Reduce stress by getting seven to nine hours of sleep every night

Getting a good night’s sleep is easier said than done, but experts agree that between seven and nine hours of sleep can help alleviate stress to decrease levels of the stress hormone, cortisol. Wake up refreshed and recharged by getting into a nighttime routine that includes reducing your exposure to blue light that disrupts your body’s natural circadian rhythm. Cut back on screen time before bed, turn on some cozy ambient lighting and treat yourself to comfy bedding you just can’t wait to crawl into. For natural sleep remedies try a cup of relaxing, warm chamomile tea before turning out the lights.

Listen To Music

One of the quickest and easiest ways to boost your mood is through music. Listening to music has proven to lower your body’s level of cortisol, the hormone linked to stress. Hit “play” on some soothing jazz in the background to quiet your thoughts, dance to your favourite pop song, or crank up the volume and rock out to some guitar-heavy tracks to elevate your mood and improve your energy.

Connect With Friends

Reach out to a friend to help boost your mood and alleviate stress in 2023

Checking in with friends in-person, online, and on the phone offers an instant mood boost. For friends who want to work on their stress-release together, look into group yoga classes at one of Toronto’s many studios, catch up during a walk, or indulge in the ultimate relaxation getaway with a short staycation or weekend getaway that will leave you feeling like a brand new person.

Embrace Meditation And Mindfulness Techniques

If you’ve never tried meditation, now is the perfect time to embark on a mindfulness journey. Meditation can calm busy minds through simple techniques you can practice anywhere – and for free! Mediation techniques have been practiced for thousands of years and studies have shown its physical and emotional benefits include improved sleep quality, lowered resting blood pressure and resting heart rates, and gaining new perspectives on challenging situations. If you need a little help getting started, popular mediation apps include Calm, Headspace, and Insight Timer so you can get your zen on when and where you want.

If your home or office space isn’t conducive to meditation, Toronto offers some relaxing meditation spaces. Near UP Express Bloor Station you’ll find AM Coffee Studio offering cozy floor seating while you work or relax as well as relaxing yoga classes twice a week.

Create A Zen Zone At Home

Create a cozy and relaxing space at home to destress

Having a quiet and enjoyable place to relax at home can help you reduce your stress levels. The best part? It’s up to you to decide what makes you the most relaxed. Maybe your zen zone is a quiet nook filled with light or a corner of your living room reserved for blankets and soft lighting, or a comfy place in your bedroom. With dark winter months ahead, consider adding dreamy mood lighting like a salt lamp or seasonal depression SAD lamp to boost your relaxation.

A Quick Mood Boost

Time is a luxury we don’t always have when we’re stressed. If you’re in the need of a quick mood boost, brew a cup of comforting green tea. Theanine, an amino acid in green tea, has been proven to relieve stress and calm the mind. Treat yourself with a little bit of dark chocolate, too. Dark chocolate containing 70% or more of cacao is linked to improved cognitive function and may also help lower the risk of cardiovascular disease and blood pressure. So go ahead, indulge and relax.

Get Outside

Outdoor activity and fresh air can help lower stress

Did you know as little as 20 minutes outside a day can help alleviate stress? Whether you have a few minutes to walk around the block or stand outside on your balcony or porch for some light stretching, a literal breath of fresh air can help calm an anxious mind. Even in the winter there are plenty of ways to get outside in Toronto. Lace up your skates at one of the city’s many free skating rinks, check out a park you’ve never been to before on an outdoor walking trail, or head outdoors to explore one of Toronto’s vibrant neighbourhoods.

Go On A Social Media Detox

We’re all guilty of scrolling through social media for news and updates. In addition to the blue light emitted by cell phones and laptops which can disrupt sleep patterns, social media addiction can worsen symptoms of stress, depression, and anxiety. Try giving yourself a break from the online world by limiting your exposure to everything from Twitter to TikTok for an hour or more per day. Leave the phone at home and go for a walk, put it down while taking a coffee break at work or try turning off your devices 30 minutes to an hour before bedtime.

Take A Vacation

Relax and recharge on vacation to destress in 2023

Sometimes getting out of town on vacation is the best way to destress. Whether that means spending a long weekend in Toronto or escaping the city for a new adventure in Ontario and beyond, we’re here to help make your travel as stress-free. With affordable fares, your vacation starts the moment you step on board UP Express. Travellers can relax in comfort with free Wi-Fi, large luggage storage areas, and charging outlets with frequent trains running seven days a week. Enjoy a well-deserved vacation and rest assured your travel plans to and from Toronto Pearson Airport will be as stress-free as possible.