Stress relief in our fast-paced modern day society is almost a misnomer, and yet stress can be the #1 cause of illness and delayed healing.
I make it a key focus in any healing protocol, and it should be an important part of our daily lives.
Our Body’s Response to Stress
The endocrine system regulates the many hormones that carry messages throughout our bodies including the ‘fight or flight’ adrenaline response and cortisol surges that many of us experience each day.
This causes stress to the adrenals, thyroid and pituitary gland and throws off the entire hormone regulating process.
Weight gain, anxiety, fatigue, and digestion disorders are common side effects of chronic stress.
The immune system is also very sensitive to chronic stressors. Stress lowers the body’s ability to fight off harmful invaders and opens us up to catching the neighbor kid’s sniffle or co-workers cough.
When you start to feel the muscles in your shoulders or jaw uncontrollably clench or you’re breathing without taking full breaths (shallow breathing), take 2 minutes out to breathe deep and allow your body a much needed rest.
Stress Relieving Technique
Taking 2 minutes to practice this deep breathing technique can relieve stress enough to lower blood pressure and cortisol levels and allow you to regain focus.
It’s also a great way to put your body into parasympathetic mode to begin the digestive process.
Stand and take a moment to stretch tired and strained muscles.
Sit in a comfortable position with your eyes closed and one hand on your belly.
Breathe slowly and deeply into your lower abdomen until you feel it expand.
Breathe out slowly until all the breath is out of your lungs to expel the used carbon dioxide that may have built up.
Take 10-20 full breaths and focus on the different muscle groups in your body to relax them fully as you breathe.
- Shoulders and arms
- Lower back and abdomen
Once you are finished, you should feel grounded, calm, and somewhat rested. Relaxing music, humming, or a dark quiet area may help the relaxation process.
Do this as many times as needed throughout the day to recharge and regain focus.