Are you stressed? If your answer is ‘yes’ it is still better because, you have been able to identify that you face this challenge. Infact, a lot of us are totally unaware that we are stressed, while some of us are in denial. In today’s competitive world we frequently face stressful situations but, there is no denying that to relieve stress there isn’t a one-size-fits all solution. What relieves you from stress, might not work for someone else.
But these are a few things you can do to relieve stress:
- Identify when you get stressed:
We spend most of our time in stressful situations, so much so that we have forgotten what being relaxed actually feels like or how it feels to be calm. Listen to your body because it does give us signals. You feel tired, eyes feel heavy and you start to rest your head on your palm and try to take a few moments of relief.
When you are relaxed and happy, you laugh and radiate a glow. But when you are stressed, your body will give signals. So, observe your body – it has a unique way to connect with you. Develop a mind body connect.
- Observe your muscles:
Your muscles will tense and stomach might ache or feel tight. At times your jaws will be clenched.
Focus on your breath:
When your breath is shallow, it means you are tensed.
- Use your senses:
To relieve stress, use your senses. But first identify the sensory experiences that you can use the best. Observe, the more engagement of which sense, would drop your stress levels quickly? This is an experiment for you. As and when you use different senses, observe how quickly your stress levels drop. Like a specific sound – like the sound waves, or a temple bell, wind chimes can drop your stress levels. Observe what type of movement relieves you. If you are a music lover what kind of songs, instruments, artists, music genre relax you.
- Technology break:
Take some time away from television, computer and cell phone. Tune into relaxing music or listen to a podcast. Take a ride for 10-15 minutes.
When you go for a walk or relax in a garden don’t be focused on your phone. Look at the people around you. Enjoy a walk at the garden.
If you are waiting for someone at a café, close your eyes, get relaxed and focus on your breath. Don’t get engaged with your phone, instead connect with yourself.
Also, go for solo trips where you are away from the crowd, phone and laptop. Take a break from technology, devices, to be amidst nature.
- Focus on breathing:
When you realize you are stressed, focus on your breath and when you change the way you breathe it can have a huge impact on your emotional state and stress levels. Breathing techniques, pranayama and meditation can calm your body and brain. If you are stressed about a meeting and you know it’s a tough client, focus on your breath and reduce your stress.
Its best to do a course on pranayama, which is a part of Yoga since it’s help to develop a mind body connect. It has psychological, physical and spiritual benefits.
- Keep moving:
Facing stress is not easy, some times you might freeze. It would make you immobile and this is associated with past trauma and memories. When you face stress try to move around. Yes, the challenge is to reactivate yourself and not escape. Move your legs, arms, fingers, neck and twist your wait. Go for a walk or swim, run, cycle, play a sport, etc. So now you move away from your thoughts and this mindful element will reenergize you and move on.
- Hugging someone you love:
Often a touch relieves stress. Hugging someone can actually relieve your stress. When you hug someone your cuddle hormone or oxytocin is released. This hormone is associated with high levels of happiness.
Oxytocin reduces your blood pressure levels and reduces the stress hormone to relax you. So, the easiest and most endearing way of reducing stress is hugging a loved one. Just don’t hold back, express yourself.
- Express gratitude:
Think about all the blessings in your life. Being grateful reminds you of all the resources you possess to cope with stress. Gratitude is the most empowering feeling.
You can make it a habit to remind yourself of the blessings in your life, when you sit to have food, write down three things you are grateful that happened to you during the day (maintaining a gratitude journal), or follow your own method that works best for you. Being grateful is an ultimate stress buster.
- Using your voice:
Vocal toning is a technique to reduce stress hormones. We suggest that you find a silent place and spend a few minutes toning before a meeting. This will relax you and focusing will be easier. This works since it exercises the tiny muscles in the inner ear that detect higher frequencies of the human speech that transmit emotions. It will help you understand what the other person is trying to convey rendering a relaxed feeling during the meetings leading to a better communication.
Sit straight, and simply make a humming sound with your lips together. Change your pitch and volume. The effect is peaceful as you feel pleasant vibrations on your face, and in your heart.
When you meditate the chaotic and intertwined thoughts in your mind unknot. You feel calm, peaceful and balanced. This benefits your emotional wellbeing and overall health. Guided meditation, visualization, Kriya Yoga, or guided imagery can be practiced to arrive at a more aware and calmer mind.
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