Studies prove that a big part of protecting our body against devastating diseases like cancer is to avoid stress.
Anxiety and stress are emotional and physical responses to perceived dangers…many that are not real at all.
In fact, many times it is the little things in life that seem to send us over the edge.
Stress is a killer plain and simple.
It’s important to learn to recognize signs that we are responding to stress. In order to do that we must begin paying attention to and listening to our body.
If our heart is racing, we suddenly feel flushed and begin to sweat or we feel edgy and angry…we are likely having a stress response.
Although meditation is one of the top exercises to calm our minds and release stress, it is not always appropriate to begin meditating the second we feel our “stress response.” So, what do we do?
There are a few exercises we can perform wherever we are that help release stress:
First we must trick our brain into understanding that the situation we find ourselves in is not as threatening as our first reaction.
Begin thinking something positive and shift attention away from the threat.
This helps to dampen the stress response. We can bring to focus in our mind an image, a memory, an event…just anything that we can quickly focus our attention on that we find pleasant and soothing.
The goal of our stress responses is to mobilize energy in anticipation for the fight or flight that will likely ensue. This is the energy we must divert in a different direction. Taking deep breaths or a nice long walk… or even walking up and down a flight of stairs will do the trick of releasing that “fight or flight” energy.
Steps to Relieve Anxiety –
If we are stuck in a situation that will not allow us to be mobile at the moment then we can use our breath.
Breathe in deeply several times, contract and release your abdominal muscles. Taking short, shallow breaths signals anxiety in the brain and body.
Learn to smile in the face of adversity. Studies reveal that laughter does reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety. Should we need help calming jittery nerves…we can watch something funny on YouTube to get our mind on something that uplits our spirit.
Adopt the attitude of gratitude. Gratitude is an empowering attitude that helps to reduce anxiety. Gratitude journals are a great way to keep our mindset in “appreciation” mode and away from overwhelm.
Learn to still your mind. The practice of meditation is an exercise that will goes with us once we become adept at it. When stress knocks at the door our mind can go to that familiar place just like meditating.
Meditating allows us to observe how the mind works and how it generates anxiety-provoking thoughts. Learning to meditate puts us in touch with those areas of ourself that eliminate stress.
Scientists are now discovering that mediation actually increases the amount of grey matter in the brain…essentially rewiring the body to stress less.
Get plenty of sleep. Lack of proper sleep not only affects us physically, but contributes to overall anxiety and stress. If we are in a particularly anxious situation we can give our body a boost by scheduling some extra zzz’s.
Start playing again. Watch children and get back to their innocence and away from our worries. Do something that makes us happy inside…even if we think we don’t have the time.
What we don’t have time for is to allow your body to fall victim to stress and anxiety.
You can lead a higher quality of life beginning now…
If you truly want to take command of your life and the way you spend your energy –
“Healthy Self Healing” can help you do just that…
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Carolyn Hansen Fitness