August 20, 2022

Finding Your Calm in New York City

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There’s no city as quite as alive as New York City. It’s a city that breathes life into its residents, revitalizes its visitors, and beckons newcomers with its horizonless opportunities. As a city that’s rich in culture, rife with extraordinary food, entertainment, and nightlife, you’re guaranteed something exciting to do, no matter which neighborhood you live in or choose to explore.

The relentless energy of New York City, however, is the same energy that can can leave you feeling depleted and drained. Chronic feelings of depletion can eventually give rise to depression or anxiety. It’s easy here to fall into a productivity trap: between the hours you spend at work and the hours you spend enjoying NYC’s unparalleled array of activities, it’s hard to find time to recharge, and even harder to justify carving out that time when there’s just so much you could be doing.

Here in New York, self-care is essential to your success and wellbeing. It’s just as important to take a break from New York’s high energy as it is to espouse it. In this article, we’re going to look at ways you can decompress and slow down in a city that never sleeps.

1) Leave the city. We all need the occasional escape from our beloved concrete jungle. While some have the luxury to leave the state or country on vacation, very few have the privilege to hop on a flight anytime the urge calls. Fortunately, there are ways to take a breather when all you have is a day. Places like Bear Mountain or Storm King are excellent options for those seeking a nature refuge. If you have an entire weekend, there’s much to be explored outside of New York: Lake Placid, Raquette Lake, Hudson, Tarrytown, and the Catskills all offer beautiful landscapes for hiking or walks, and lovely areas to shop and eat in town.

2) Take advantage of its nature. There are nearly 2000 parks within Manhattan and its boroughs contain as well as magnificent botannical gardens. When the weather permits, try carving out time each week for a walk in the park. When time is limited, find something local; otherwise, it’s well worth it to spend time exploring a park you’ve never experienced. Each park offers a different landscape with unique views. Make a game of finding the one that calls your name. Use that time to unplug from work, or even unplug from your social life. Give that time to yourself.

3) Embrace art and history. New York City offers well over 100 museums. If you know what you love (e.g., modern art, ancient history), visit a museum that offers an experience you know you’ll enjoy. And again, use that time to unplug (hint: leave your phone in your pocket or bag!). The array of options is vast: New York offers exciting, time-limited pop-up museums, as well as museums of natural history, ancient history, modern history, and ancient and modern art. If you don’t know what you like, then this is the perfect opportunity to explore and create new interests.

5) Let someone else help you unwind. If you enjoy moving your body, try a yoga class. If you’re in need of resting your mind, try a meditation class. And if you could use a bit of pampering, make an appointment at the spa. No matter your budget, New York offers endless opportunities to decompress (pro hint: most nail salons offer massage services). Check out Groupon for budget-friendly options, and give yourself the gift of relaxation as a means of investing in your wellbeing.

6) Turn your apartment into an oasis. What brings you calm? What brings you joy? The Danish have a word – hygge – meaning the quality of cozy that makes a person feel content and happy. What can you invite into your personal space create an atmosphere that feels calming and serene? What colors soothe you? What kind of blankets, what sort of lighting, what type of snacks? Do you prefer a space that’s slightly chilled, or warm? Spend some time thinking about ways that you can optimize your apartment to feel like an oasis.

If you find yourself struggling to make space for your needs in a city that prioritizes productivity, we’re here to help. Here at Gold Therapy NYC, we’ll help you figure out what’s holding you back from being generous to yourself, and we’ll support you in making the changes that you need in order to prioritze your own needs. Reach out today for a free consultation.

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