Relax your SoulWelcome to Day 3
High-demanding jobs. Emotional distress. Unmet expectations. Sometimes, the world can be too overwhelming if we don’t take some time to tune into ourselves. Stress and anxiety can take over and be in the way of our accomplishments.
Incorporate relaxation as part of your routine in order to prevent negative feelings from getting to you. Being mindful of your relaxation techniques allow you to dismiss crippling limiting beliefs and negative self-talk, as well as cope with everyday setbacks, stopping your stress and anxiety to spiral out of control.
Relaxation techniques range from controlling your breathing, embracing meditation to listening to stimulating music and simply getting a massage at the end of the day! Now, sit back, relax and enjoy a few tips to chill and decompress.
Why You Feel Anxious
Firstly, do you have any idea why you feel anxious? Anxiety is a natural response of the human brain to threats, putting our bodies into the fight-or-flight mode. The survival state of alertness, which enhances our speed, reflexes, heart rate and circulation is a low frequency response, though, based on fear.
For the majority of us, it’s a natural and temporary state — let’s say, public speaking or bungee jumping, for example — and relaxation techniques can help deal with this fear-induced reaction in a clearer, more conscious way. When you’re stressed out, fearful thoughts start popping up creating even more anxiety. This process is called thought suppression — when you try to stop the thought, and can’t only think about “not thinking about the thought”, which causes you to think even harder about the thought you were supposed to dismiss. Ugh. What to do?
Stop thinking and start feeling. Acknowledging you have anxiety and accepting these negatives thoughts as being part of life will cause them to be less prominent. Judging a situation and reacting to it will lead to a large energy leak.
Life is made of simple contracts of good and bad, right and wrong, better and worse, happy and sad. When you realise life’s a roller coaster, you stop resisting daily circumstances and just go for the ride. What if the outcome is not quite what you were expecting? Change your perspective and look for silver linings. There is always an upside to a bad situation. Focus on that and move on.
Live on the Present. Our feelings create our reality. We often feel regret because we didn’t do enough in the past and anxiety because we are scared of the future. But what if our perception of time and space has simply deceived us? Bear with us for a moment.
Quantum physics has come to explain that Past, Present and Future exist at the same time, which means if you concentrate on the now, you can mend you past and create your future according to your deepest wants. It’s that simple. So, relax and enjoy the ride.
Be authentic. It is the key to a life with less anxiety. But what is authenticity after all? It’s letting your gut feeling take control. Do only what you makes you feel good, because that has a deeper root to your values and beliefs.
Feel your way through life by gaining clarity around your intuition. Are you feeling good? Make sure to take care of your energy levels. Meditate to access your subconscious. Take care of your body through a balanced diet. Get a massage to boost your mood. And don’t be scared to seek solitude to understand your true self.
Inhale. Exhale. There’s nothing else to learn… or is there? You are about to unlock some magical powers just by being mindful of the way you breathe. You can achieve a higher state of clarity, lower blood pressure, reduce stress and anxiety, and even boost your mood and energy levels with the right exercise.
Abdominal Breathing Technique
Those who are into sports might be familiar with this exercise. Breathe slowly through your nose into your lungs all the way down to you abdomen, making sure your diaphragm — not the chest — inflates. Place one hand on your upper chest while the other rests just below your rib cage. Feel your diaphragm move as you breathe, while the hand on your chest stays still. This exercise promotes immediate reduction to your heart rate and blood pressure.
Bellows Breath — Breath of Fire
Also known as Bhastrika, this technique will stimulate your body and put your mind at easy. Yogis claim this breathing exercise can even increase your digestive power and boost your metabolism. Keeping your mouth closed, breathe in and out through your nose quickly and forcefully. Make sure the breath is coming from your diaphragm, not your chest. Practice it when you feel sluggish to recharge your energy, instead of reaching for a cup of coffee.
The goal here to rid the tension from your body. Focus on tensing and relaxing the muscles of your body, gradually from head to toe, while breathing in deeply and slowly through your nose, and out through your mouth. Hold your breath for up to five seconds before exhaling.
3 Types of Meditation
Just like your body, you can train your mind to go the extra mile. The idea is to create capacity to be able to take on the world around you more easily. Meditation is the best way to supercharge your mind, while gaining awareness of your own thoughts and self. Some proven benefits of meditation include less stress, better sleep, healthier waistline, and faster healing.
There are several types of meditation, and each one require a different mental skill. It can seem a bit hard in the beginning to sit there for hours to empty your mind, but the great thing about meditation is: the more you practice, the better you get at it! There are a lot of apps out there that help you with guided meditations and a selection of background music to get you going. It’s an amazing starting point.
Here are a three types of meditation you can try to boost your mind and create capacity:
Great for beginners! The idea is to focus on a single point: your breath, the repetition of a word or a mantra, paying attention to one song, staring at a candle flame, you name it involves focusing on a single point. You can start off by concentrating for a few minutes and every time you minds wanders off, you go back to your focus point. This meditation technique boosts your concentration skills.
While in Concentration Meditation you dismiss any thoughts that come to you, Mindfulness Meditation instigates you to create awareness and accept those thought without judgment. The goal is to understand our mental, emotional, and physical processes, acknowledge the connectedness between people, and put this newfound awareness into work, operating in the world with greater compassion towards others and ourselves.
It’s the time you image where you want to be, go to your “happy place”, or what you want to achieve. Visualise pleasant images, and think positive thoughts that will help you get that. Bob Bowman, Michael Phelps’ coach had the swimmer’s mother repeat a guided visualisation picturing his ideal race to a young Phelps every night before bed. Phelps kept on doing this technique before each race as an adult.
Music for the Mind
Music is powerful. When you turn your speakers on you can feel the tremendous effects songs have over your thoughts and emotions. Hearing music can increase the release of dopamine into your body.Push play on your favourite song and watch your day go from ordinary to amazing! What you didn’t know that you not only connect with the word of a song. In fact, you connect your vibrations to the music — and that’s why music has such a huge impact on you, deeply addressing your emotional, social, and physical needs. Just take a look at Music Therapy, for instance.
Studies have shown people who suffer from dementia, Parkinson’s and other diseases that alters the brain chemistry can reconnect to the world and improve the quality of their lives by listening to personal music favorites. “A lot of times Parkinson’s patients can dance beautifully when they can’t walk. I have people who can barely take a step, but they can dance. Because they bring the unconscious into the conscious“, explains Enrico Fazzini, a neurologist at New York University Medical Center.
The vibrations that produce the music we listen to, therefore are also intrinsically connected to the way we feel. You can then consciously choose to listen to songs created on a certain vibration to help you deal with the relationship with those around you, and with your body and mind.
Binaural beats is an auditory illusion created when two different pure-tone sine waves, with frequencies lower than 1,500 Hz and less than 40 Hz difference between them, are delivered to the listener dichotically (one through each ear). There have been studies showing that listening to binaural music may help induce relaxation states, and have influence over your heart rate.
Solfeggio frequencies make up the ancient six-tone diatonic scale music thought to have been used in multiple types of sacred compositions, such as Gregorian Chants, a form of sacred song of the western Roman Catholic Church. They were believed to impart spiritual blessings.
Each of the six Solfeggio tones embrace the specific frequency required for balancing your energy and allowing your body, mind and spirit in perfect harmony.
Time for a Massage
Often seen as a luxury, massage has incredible benefits for your body. Soothing anxiety and depression, helping with migraines and PMS, boosting immunity, there are endless reasons to book your appointment today. A scientific study has identified how massage interacts with the muscles protein, identifying that it reduces inflammation and helps cells recover. No wonder why massage therapy is an integral part of any high-performance athlete routine.
“Massage reduces the inflammatory response as a function of the damage you incurred while you’re exercising,” says Simon Melov, a molecular biologist at the Buck Institute for Research on Aging, one of the author’s of this study.
Another study showed that massage therapy can relieve chronic pain. “We found the benefits of massage are about as strong as those reported for other effective treatments: medications, acupuncture, exercise, and yoga,” Dan Cherkin, Ph.D., lead author of the study. A massage not only helps ease muscle pain, but also can boost your mood and help you function better.
Getting a massage also makes you feel amazing. That happens because the therapy reduces the levels of cortisol — the stress hormone — and boosts your serotonin and dopamine levels, which causes you to be more relaxed and happier.
Not surprisingly, massage therapy can ease insomnia. A study from the Touch Research Institute found out that massage increases delta waves, brainwaves connected with deep sleep. That’s why it’s so easy to drift off on the massage table!
Now, if you’re looking to wake up, massage can also give you hand. The same study suggests that a simple 15-minute chair massage raises alertness, giving you a feeling of euphoria similar to a runner’s high. That is because the brainwave activity stimulated by massage is linked to improving attention.