Techniques to help cope with stress
- 6 Months ago
Time and again, numerous studies have proven how exercise is one the best ways to bust stress. Stress causes the human body to go into a fight-or-flight response that sends the body into high charge mode causing it to be filled with a lot of nervous energy and a sudden flood of hormones like adrenaline and cortisol. Nervous energy is excess energy generated as a result of stress. But in physiological terms, energy only points to one thing- a sugar (glucose) rush. Nervous energy has to be dissipated quickly or else can be very dangerous.
Exercise combined with a few other techniques is the best way to rid the body of this excess energy. So the next time you are stressed out, try the following:
- Deep Breathing: Cross your legs and sit upright. Draw in slow, deep breaths from the diaphragm. Exhale slowly and relax your chest and shoulders. Deep breathing enables efficient exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide. If you are going through extreme stress, try breathing deeply by lying on your back.
- Body-Focus Breathing: This type of deep breathing is bound to take you to a higher level of consciousness. Close your eyes and take in a deep breath and sense the environment around you. Relax your body and imagine that all the negativity is flowing out of you when you exhale and good energy is flowing in when you inhale.
- Yoga & Stretches: Yoga poses and general stretching can relieve tension from muscles and make the body more flexible. Release of tension from muscles can bring about a feeling of relaxation.
- Meditation & Imagery Techniques: Sit in a comfortable, noiseless environment, close your eyes and free your mind from all the events of the day. Detach yourself from the surroundings and make your mind a blank space. If this seems hard, try attaching an image to the stress in your head. Imagine your stress to be like a giant ball. Now focus on the ball and imagine it shrinking slowly.
- Progressive Muscle-Relaxation Techniques: This technique involves progressively tensing and relaxing each muscle group. For instance, close your fist and hold it tight for 5 seconds. Feel the tension inside? Now relax your hand and imagine the tension slipping away. Do the same to your other fist and gradually progress upwards exercising each body part.
- Head & Neck Massage: You can do this yourself or ask someone to do it for you. Start at your temples and forehead and using your fingers, make gentle rubbing motions on your forehead. Do this for some time and progress gradually to the head, neck, eyelids, and under chin areas.
Be consistent with these exercises and feel the stress melt away.