The feeling of stress has become all-surrounding in our hectic lives. We often consider the notion of being stressed as normal, some people think of it even as desirable (in their eyes a stressed person may seem more successful – you will soon see that I don’t agree with this and this shouldn’t come as a surprise to you).
Stress is a physical reaction to a dangerous situation and activates a fight or flee response. Think of encountering a lion in a desert. Our body reacts with activating the sympathetic nervous system, adrenaline pumps through our whole body affecting all organs, allowing more oxygen into the body, blood sugar rises to bring needed fuel. We become hyperalert and ready to fight or flee. This physical reaction to stress increases our chances to survive when we encounter the lion.
But what happens when our daily worry about our jobs, relationships, the future becomes the lion?
The physical reaction to this psychological threat is the same as if we indeed faced a lion. Stress is linked to a number of health issues, primarily high blood pressure, heart conditions, and also eating disorders, and chronic diseases. Now you know why I don’t think it’s a desirable state of mind.
What can you do when you don’t have time for the daily 90-minute yoga class or daily hour-long mediation?
Take a deep breath & unplug! When an emergency session with your yoga instructor is just not convenient, do this:
- Leave your phone behind and go for a 10-minute walk. Take deep breaths and look around you. Be present in this moment.
- Lie down for 10 minutes in shavasana (corpse pose) and take deep breaths.
- Take 10 minutes of quiet meditation. Sit up with your head and neck aligned and bring your full attention to your breathing.
Ideally, you should do any of these daily not just when in a stressful situation. Studies have shown that regular meditation and yoga increases overall well-being and health.
What do you do for stress relieve?