In today’s fast-paced world, you can be carrying a lot more stress that you realize. The ongoing stressful experience of modern life can take its toll on your brain over time, and it can wreak havoc on your body.
Here are three valuable techniques to help you de-stress and rebalance your mind and body:
Reducing stress through breath work is very popular because it works for everyone. It’s also fast and completely free. Breathing techniques can be used as a standalone treatment or in combination with other relaxation exercises, such as yoga or meditation.
Deep breathing, also known as diaphragmic breathing, is one style of breathing exercise that is perfect for de-stressing. This method involves using the diaphragm to breath, instead of just using your lungs.
To start the deep breathing technique, inhale deeply through your nose for four seconds. Extend your stomach by using your diaphragm to hold the incoming air. After four seconds, stop and hold your breath for the following seven seconds. Using your diaphragm again, slowly pull back in your stomach and exhaling for the next eight seconds.
Do this several times each day as a routine, and ensure you practice deep breathing whenever you notice that you are feeling some stress.
PROGRESSIVE MUSCLE RELAXATION
Another simple technique that is effective for relaxing the body is progressive muscle relaxation, also known as PMR. This technique involves tightening a specific set of muscles, holding them taut for a few seconds, and then steadily releasing that tension.
The progressive muscle relaxation practice provides a physical release and reduces physical strain by tensing muscles up in a controlled way, and then relaxing them.
To correctly engage this stress-relieving technique, start sitting comfortably in a chair or by lying down. Become aware of the muscles in your face, then try to tense all of them up at the same time. It helps to close your eyes tight and keep them closed. Do the same with your teeth, carefully ensuring you do not gnash them.
Now use the deep breathing explained earlier, except on the exhale, also slowly release the tension on your eyes and jaw. You may feel the stress melting away as you relax all your facial muscles.
From there, work your way down your body, tensing and releasing the muscles in your neck, shoulders, each arm separately, then the legs one by one. Don’t forget to do your progressive muscle relaxation on your buttocks and your abdominal muscles, as well.
It should take about 15 minutes or less to go through your whole body releasing stress this way. If you can, do this 2-3 times per day for best results.
GETTING MORE PHYSICAL EXERCISE
When you feel stressed, your body produces a hormone called cortisol. The overproduction of cortisol floods into your body, which can take a toll on your health.
Cortisol is produced in the body naturally and should be released occasionally. However, with the additional stressors of modern life, your body is likely producing far more cortisol than it should.
The continual release of this stress hormone can cause weight gain, sleep imbalances, and other health-related issues. Exercising reduces the effects of cortisol overproduction by causing the body to release another set of hormones, called endorphins. These hormones are known to make you feel good. The feeling they produce is commonly known as a “runner’s high”.
Research has shown that people who exercise on a regular basis are less affected by stress. Developing an ongoing edge to combat long term stress is a great plan for our healthcare.
Breathing exercises, progressive muscle relaxation, and regular exercise will help clear away high cortisol levels and produce a more relaxed feeling. Try any or all of these body-stress reducing techniques to reduce stress both in your physical body and emotionally.
There are many ways to reduce stress. I would love to show you how to achieve this through The Body CodeTM.
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