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Transform Stress

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Transform Stress

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Stress is unavoidable, yet it is also manageable. Changing your response to stress will have a huge impact on your resilience. Stop the cycle of stress now.

Improving your ability to transform stress will:

  • Strengthen your energy reserves
  • Improve tissue health
  • Create a supportive environment for healthy ageing

The time to relax is when you don’t have time for it.”  Sydney J. Harris

Take deep breaths, and transform stress with confidence and skills.

You are not alone – most people report moderate to high daily stress, which can worsen and even cause health conditions.

Take a few healthy steps every week, and see how it changes your ability to cope with and transform stress. Proven stress management techniques include:

Daily Suggestions

  • Go for a walk
  • Listen to music or dance
  • Make and eat a healthy meal
  • Breathe deeply and centre yourself – HeartMath
  • Journal about positive things for which you are grateful
  • Scan your body and be aware of how you feel
  • Be creative (e.g. adult colouring books, sketch, crochet, write, draw)
  • Give yourself a hand or foot massage
  • Express gratitude to someone

Weekly Suggestions

  • Spend time with supportive friends or family
  • Look at something you consider beautiful (e.g. art or nature)
  • Yoga, tai chi or qi gong
  • Adopt an active hobby like water aerobics, cycling or gardening
  • Write a letter to someone you care about
  • Get a massage, sit in a sauna or soak in a jacuzzi
  • Sleep until you wake naturally
  • Visualise a place you find relaxing, like a beach, park, childhood room etc
  • Find a funny movie or book and laugh

In scholarly research, practising relaxation techniques benefited individuals with a variety of conditions including:

  • Anxiety
  • Childbirth
  • Depression
  • Heart disease
  • High blood pressure
  • Insomnia
  • Chemotherapy-induced nausea
  • Pain in children and adolescents
  • Smoking cessation
  • Temporomandibular joint dysfunction

“For breath is life, and if you breathe well you will live long on earth.” Sanskrit Proverb

Breath is vital. When we are stressed, happy, or exercising, breath causes a feedback loop for that physical state.

However, breathing can be either voluntary or involuntary, which means that we can affect our physical state.

Being conscious and breathing in a particular way can lead to deep relaxation, decreased pain, and improved mental state.

Abdominal breathing, also called diaphragmatic breathing, changes the oxygenation levels in your body as well as strengthening the diaphragm.

Many people feel calmer and more centredafterwards, and it may help to reduce negative emotions.

Since it can be practised anytime, anywhere, for free, and has been associated with a host of positive physical effects, why not try it today?

Get Started

Sit or lie down comfortably, with your feet flat on the floor. Put one hand on your upper chest, and the other on your abdomen, just under your ribcage. Feel yourself breathing and become aware of how deeply or shallowly you are breathing.

Take a deep breath, feeling your abdomen rise as you breathe. Your upper hand should move very little, while your abdomen lifts your other hand. Imagine a feeling of warmth as the breath moves from your mouth, down your throat, into your lungs, and your diaphragm expands.

Hold the breath for a count of 4.

Exhale slowly through your nose for a count of 4.

Inhale slowly to a count of 4, feeling the warmth of your breath and your abdomen rise. Keep your chest relatively still. Hold the breath for 4, exhale slowly, and repeat.

Reflect

Consider how your body feels different from before practising conscious breathing. Are your shoulders more relaxed? Do your thoughts feel any different?

Repeat 

5 minutes is a good amount of time to affect your physiology, decrease anxiety, and improve mental state.

However, even one or two abdominal breaths can be helpful! Although best learned sitting or lying down, any time you can consciously breathe is an opportunity, including standing in line at the supermarket.

As you become proficient in abdominal breathing, you may want to tense your abdomen slightly at the end of the exhale, to push out the remaining air.

If lying down, you can also put a book on your abdomen and lift it with your breath.

Over time, you won’t need to involve your hands. Some people use visualisations, for instance, a half circle that represents in the inhale and hold, and a semicircle finishing the loop for the exhale and hold.

Other people repeat a word as a mantra, like peace or joy, letting that word centre their thoughts.

Practise whenever you can. Because of how abdominal breathing affects your mental state, it may be especially useful when you are stressed out, tired, frustrated, or confused. Abdominal breathing can help you to relax, reset, and refocus.

Are You Ready To Reach Your Health & Performance Potential?

Schedule your FREE 20-minute call to find out how we can help you be your best.

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