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Relax! Mindful Ways to Relieve Stress

by Catherine Epstein March 19, 2016

Relax! Mindful Ways to Relieve Stress

RELAX! MINDFUL WAYS TO RELIEVE STRESS

What’s your first reaction when someone tells you to “relax or calm down?”  For some, their immediate response is: “I’m NOT tense!” Then, their inner voice kicks in and says, “yeah, maybe I better take it easy” and even though they might not want to show it, they let go just a bit.

Take a moment now and scan your body. Sometimes, we are just plodding through our day without awareness of our physical state. We wonder why we feel so tired all the time. Learning to check in with our bodies is the fastest way to get back in touch with what we are feeling.

Stress is a pervasive part of our society. Simply walk down the street and observe the expressions on the faces of other folks. Or, you might not even see their face, but the top of their head- as they look down at their phones.

Awareness is key. As a Life Coach, I always teach people that you can’t make lasting changes if you aren’t aware of the issue or its source.

Here are some ways that I share with people to relieve their stress, and to put the body in a more relaxed state. 

 

  • Freeze your face– An odd suggestion for a technique I learned a long time ago. During the course of your day, stop what you are doing and “freeze” your face. Bring your attention to the expression that you are making. Notice if the eyebrows are furrowed, the jaw is clenched, if you are smiling or not.  When you “freeze your face,” you capture a snapshot in a moment that might reveal some very interesting things to you. As always, you want to observe without judging.  When you are informed, it can help you to make a conscious decision to be aware of the outer that is displayed to the world. I used to be always in thinking mode, until one day, someone asked me why I looked so mad all the time. Here I was simply thinking, thinking, thinking and I was appearing “angry” to the outside world…I pondered this more, and remembered the “freeze your face” technique that I had learned as a child. It is now part of my daily check-in and I’m happy to say that I’m more conscious to share that JOY with the outer world.  Consciously relax your  jaw muscles and un-furrow your brow. Let yourself SMILE.

          Try it and let me know what your results are.

  • Hold a Rock– Find a stone that has the specific purpose of helping you to relax. There are many crystals and stones that are suited to helping you to feel calmer. Everything is energy, so find a stone that suits your needs and responds to your vibration.  Lepidolite, Howlite and Aventurine are a few suggestions.   http://www.livinglotusgroup.com/shop-categories/heart-stone/aventurine-heart-stone/                                    
http://www.livinglotusgroup.com/shop-categories/heart-stone/aventurine-heart-stone/

Aventurine Heart Stone

  • Take a Walk– Reconnect with the Earth. Get out and get the fresh air and feel grounded. Take three deep breaths to fill your lungs.  Being out in nature can rejuvenate your soul! Get outside at least once a day no matter the weather and allow yourself to fully see the colors, the trees, feel the earth below your feet. Bring awareness to the beauty and connection to ALL.

 

  • Shake it up– Bounce up and down, shake, rattle, move your body. Your muscles are begging to be used. When you bounce or shake, it helps to move and release any stuck energy. Dance, walk, stretch, connect with yourself through body awareness.

 

  • Use your Phone– Put your phone to a good use! Here is a tip I find extremely helpful. Program your phone to go off every few hours, with a reminder to take a deep breath.  Sometimes, I get the reminder at the most convenient times. This is a great way to use the phone to help you relax.

 

  • Say it again– Mantras and affirmations really do work!  Repetition is the key. When you keep repeating a positive word or a phrase, say it like you mean it.  This will help program the subconscious mind. Words are very powerful, so allow the energy of each word you recite to uplift you and to take you to a place deep within your heart. Say the following words softly to yourself as you focus on the energy:  

-nurture

-relax

-sustain

-harmony

-oneness

-soften

-serenity

-peacefulness

-bliss

-calm

-hope

-balance

-flow

-joy

-embrace

-warmth

-surrender

-Divine

-LOVE

 

  • Practice before you need it– It’s easier to develop a practice in times of grace and ease. Set aside time each day to sit and reflect.  Honor yourself and take a moment to appreciate how far you’ve come.

Learning to incorporate Mindfulness in your everyday life will help provide you with the tools to relieve stress.  Let go of things you cannot control, take a deep breath and RELAX.

~cathie




Catherine Epstein
Catherine Epstein

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