As humans, it’s natural to experience stress. After all, it’s our body’s instinct to respond effectively to a perceived threat.
However, if it’s left untreated or unnoticed, stress can become chronic. That’s why it is crucial for our wellbeing to periodically take stock of our stress levels and, if necessary, pause and reset. Practicing stress-relieving techniques and teaching them to our children will result in greater harmony in our homes, our workplaces, and ourselves.
The following steps contain several techniques to help you destress:
Three deep breaths
This type of breathing helps to relax the muscles and massages the internal organs. It is beneficial for both physical and mental health. Also known as diaphragmatic breathing, it can relieve stress, improve confidence, and help promote better circulation. It’s easy to do and can be done from anywhere: at work, driving, while in bed, etc. The toughest part? REMEMBERING TO DO IT! What I did that worked great for me, was to save “JUST BREATHE” as my phone background. So every time I reach for my phone (which unfortunately is a lot…) I take a few deep breaths. Here are a few breathing exercises you can try.
Body awareness practice
Drawing our awareness to physical sensations in our body when we are stressed, is a way to keep the mind alert and grounded in the present moment. This can be as simple as a quick body scan: start at the feet; wiggle your toes and work your way up the body, alternately tensing and relaxing muscles as you go. End with the eyebrows which frame the third eye. You can also ask yourself things like, Am I breathing fast or slow? Can I close my eyes and relax for a moment? Exploring our body awareness helps to keep our mind curious and pushes away stressful thoughts. Here is a short recording of a body awareness meditation.
Self-love / self-compassion meditation
To have empathy for yourself is to understand and accept what has happened during tough times in your life, forgiving yourself for any mistakes you may have made, and embracing yourself in all your humanity. Strengthening your self-love muscle gives you the ability to accept yourself fully, and is a very effective way to stay positive and lower stress levels. This is an excellent article with tips on how to honor the great person you are.
The above are just 3 of many different practices to help relieve stress and anxiety. There are myriad others, including mindfulness, yoga, connection with nature, working out, massage therapy, and many more. We recommend trying several and finding the ones that fit best for you, keeping in mind that your needs may change over time, and may differ according to the circumstance.
So tell us…what works best for you? Whatever you choose…Always go for INNER PEACE!