Mental break activities that aren’t watching TV


Life is stressful and busy. Sooner or later, we all need a break. And while many of us turn to television, there are some really great alternatives for a mental break that don’t involve hanging out with the Kardashians.

It seems that our standard operating procedure for relaxing and taking a break these days is stretching out on a couch and hitting up the latest bingeable TV show on Netflix. While there’s a time and place for visual consumption, sometimes you need a real break.

Whether you’re looking for an activity that will help slow you down or need a burst of energy, there are a ton of great choices out there. Here are some of our favourites.

Activities to Slow Down


While reading does take some active mental capacity to do, it’s not the same type of concentration that’s required by work or school. That’s especially the case if you read a book you’re particularly interested in.

If you need a break from your life and want to “go somewhere” for a while, take off on an adventure with your favourite literary character. You can pick up your “boarding pass” at the local library.


If your mind is buzzing with thoughts and you simply need to get them out, then journaling is a great de-stressing activity to undertake.

Whether you want to write a list of everything you’re thinking about, dig deep into something specific, or simply write about nothing, putting pen to paper (or fingers to the keyboard) can be seriously good for stress relief.


Adult colouring books are a legitimate way to relax and let your mind drift.

Often the best way to relax instead of focusing on trying to “clear” your mind is to do a task that doesn’t require a lot of mental output so your brain can drift and wander. If that’s what you’re looking for, then colouring is a great option.

Grab yourself some crayons or coloured pencils, your favourite adult colour book (or not, we won’t judge) and colour your stress away.

Activities to Pump Yourself Up

Hit the gym

If you want something fast-paced to really work some stress out and take a mental break, then the gym is a great place to go.

The gym lets you burn off some unwanted energy and stress while concentrating your brain on something specific. Ergo, you aren’t sitting there stressing about things.

Plus the endorphins exercise releases help you feel great afterwards. It’s a great mental workout!

Take a walk

If you want to exercise but need something a little slower-paced than the gym, taking a walk is a great idea. You still get exercise, but your mental activity is minimal and apart from looking both ways before you cross the street, you can mentally drift.

Walking is a great way to work out mental complexities too. Sometimes being out in nature, breathing in that fresh air and moving your body can help you work out mental blocks.

Clean your apartment (and dance)

Hear me out — cleaning sounds like a terrible idea. But if you throw on some music and let yourself move around your space while you tidy, it’s actually a great way to relax.

Feel free to close your blinds, and really go wild while with your cleaning dance movies. It’s the perfect activity to burn off some energy, relax your mind and accomplish something you otherwise probably didn’t have time for! Plus, the look of a clean house is very satisfying and is proven to release stress.

Everyone needs a mental break every once in a while, but before you plop yourself down on the couch and fire up the ol’ TV, try one of these mental break activities!