Looking for a TV show that’ll let you zone out? This list is for you.

Life is hectic. And sometimes, flipping the internal off-switch is more difficult than not hitting the snooze button in the a.m. That’s where we come in. Ahead, we’ve gathered a list of calming TV shows that quiet the chaos and tap into the Zen. From moving art featuring Planet Earth’s most wonderous and soothing sights to heartwarming sitcoms that will be waiting for you when you wake up, the following collection of TV shows is your ticket to relaxation station.

Nostalgic Soothers

The Joy of Painting

The Joy of Painting is a calming TV show

A few soothing strokes of Bob Ross’s hog-bristle brush and those eyelids will start to droop. Not because the canvas whisperer is a bore, but because his tranquil instruction and gentle technique are more calming than the pretty little streams and happy fluffy clouds he paints.

Available on Pluto or PBS.com

Gilmore Girls

Some might say the rapid-fire banter volleyed back and forth in this comedic drama from Mrs. Maisel’s Amy Sherman-Palladino is dizzying, but for us, it’s a linguistic symphony that numbs the mind and soothes the soul. Sleep always comes easy knowing Rory, Lorelai, and their amusing dilemmas will still be there in the morning.

Available on Netflix.

The West Wing

Another gem known for its accelerated dialogue, The West Wing has Aaron Sorkin to thank for its convo cadence. But with this one, the calming qualities come from its somewhat optimistic take on the political roller coaster that runs through Washington, D.C. Facing crises ranging from biohazard lockdowns to missing First Daughters, the series gets serious but always keeps the mood upbeat.

Available on Max.


When your brain’s turned to mush, get lost in this will-they/won’t-they romantic saga from 1998. Keri Russell stars as a college student navigating dating and adulting, and if you’re familiar with the actress, then you know her soft, muted tone. Couple that with an intimate and subdued lighting style, and the cozy atmosphere is set.

Available on Hulu.

Tranquil Earthy Delights

Planet Earth

Sir David Attenborough is counting sheep in human form. And we mean this with the most complimentary respect. The longtime nature series narrator traverses the globe, exploring the planet’s most wondrous treasures, from the frigid poles and arid deserts to the deepest oceans and all the fascinating wildlife in between. It’s just the escape to paint the backdrop for the best dreams.

Available on Prime Video.

A World of Calm

A World of Calm is a calming TV show
Warner Bros.

Not that we want you to stop reading this roundup, but pause. For just 15 seconds. Do nothing. We’ll wait. … That’s the idea of Calm, an anxiety-reducing app that’s a Nervous Nancy’s savior with quickie meditations. Expanding its reach, Calm now has a TV series featuring stunning imagery with balmy narration–like, Idris Elba telling you a stellar bedtime story.

Available on Max.

The Blue Planet

If you’re the type to hit “ocean life” on the old sound machine before catching some zzz’s, then The Blue Planet is on the same wavelength. A huge undertaking that took five years to make, the series goes deep-sea diving with the oceans’ most majestic creatures and aquatic wildlife, giving new–and better–meaning to the waterbed.

Available on Discovery+.

Baby Animals in the Wild

Cute baby animals: It doesn’t get more adorable than that. From fuzzy tiger cubs and tiny sea turtles to goofy owl chicks and grizzly baby bison, this series treads through every habitat under the sun and surface. Move over, Teddy Lasso, there’s a new cuddle bear in town.

Available on Prime Video.

Night on Earth

Narrator Samira Wiley introduces you to Mother Nature’s finest in their natural habitats, at night. A Netflix Original, this limited series offers viewers a first-class ticket to every corner of the world, capturing flora and fauna, as well as every hour of and star of the night. This one will get you to the state of calm you’re after.

Available on Netflix.

Relaxing Reality

Making It

Nick Offerman is at your service for a tuck-in. But if you’d rather Amy Poehler do the job, she’s here, too. The pair host this lovely competition show that recruits crafters and makers to show off their handmade talents. The episodes are like little pockets of joy that culminate in a craft-off by the end of the season.

Available on Prime Video.

The Great British Baking Show

The Great British Baking Show is a calming tv show

Ready to drift off to dream as candy-colored macarons and flaky fruit tarts dance in your head? Then, queue up this wonderfully British reality baking show. The judges are delightful, the hosts are cheery, and the contestants and their stories are as warm and inviting as the sponges they pull from the oven. Hopefully, you slip off to dream before those tummy grumbles set in.

Available on Netflix.

Queer Eye: More Than a Makeover

Winding down with the Fab Five is always an A+ idea. More than just a reality series about before-and-afters, Queer Eye comes with all the feels. The guys hit up the nation’s biggest cities, transforming individuals and bringing out their inner superstars. So don’t be surprised if the pillowcase under your head needs turning after soaking up all those love tears.

Available on Netflix.

Feel-Good Sitcoms

Never Have I Ever

Never Have I Ever is a show on Netflix

A coming-of-age comedy with Mindy Kaling’s influence all over it, Never Have I Ever follows protagonist Davie through high school, juggling dreams of going to Princeton with equally vital urges to lose her virginity. The episodes are short, the relationships are relatable, and the familial experiences will make you feel like you were back at home in your childhood bedroom.

Available on Netflix.

Parks and Recreation

The great city of Pawnee might not inspire any wanderlust, but it will certainly make you wish you worked with such a great team. Amy Poehler leads a cast of comedy greats, all playing staffers in the Parks and Recreation department. It all unfolds in an Office-like exterior, but the pro-feminist subtext is what really puts this workplace sitcom above all others.

Available on Peacock.


Starstruck is a TV show on Max

When bedtime calls for a little romance with a side of Kiwi comedy, go with Starstruck. An under-watched and way-underappreciated rom-com, the show meanders through the love story of Jessie and Tom. She’s a millennial trying to adult in East London. He’s an uber-famous movie star. And together, they just magically work.

Available on Max.

Mellow Mysteries

Only Murders in the Building

Only Murders in the Building is a calming TV show on Hulu
Craig Blankenhorn/Hulu

Gifting viewers with a hilarious troupe trio they never knew they needed, Only Murders in the Building stars Selena Gomez, Martin Short, and Steve Martin as armchair detectives solving their building’s crimes and gathering fodder for their true-crime podcast. Silly, absurd, and outfitted in fall’s coziest hues, the show is like the softest, chunkiest Merino wool sweater in your closet–but in screen form.

Available on Hulu.

Black Snow

Allow the melodic sounds of Aussie accents to lull you into a state of relaxation with this psychological crime drama about a small Sea Island community devastated by buried secrets, truths, and murder. Isabel Baker, a 17-year-old who was killed on her way home from school in 1995, is brought back into the forefront when detective James Cormack warms up to her cold case.

Available on AMC+.

Poker Face

A wonderful hidden gem nestled in the digital library of Peacock, Poker Face stars a brilliant Natasha Lyonne as Charlie Cale, a casino worker on the lamb who uses her innate ability to solve whodunits. Each hour-long episode includes a different mystery to unravel; think of it like Murder, She Wrote for the modern age.

Available on Peacock.

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