Unfortunately, stress is a part of our day to day life and sometimes cannot be avoided.
It can come in a variety of ways through work, at home or personally. An overload of stress can be harmful to the body and lead to an array of problems both mentally and physically.
For this reason, a big part of my online health & fitness program, Body by Finch, is to nurture the mind through meditation to help decrease stress in the body. Every day I take steps to not only eliminate stress but learn how to deal with it when it comes swinging. My tips are below.
I aim to spend 5-10mins for meditation in the morning and afternoon. It may not always happen at the exact same time but I work it into my day somehow. If Dom get’s up before me (quite common) I’ll pop him in the pram and walk him with Simba in the park where I practice ‘active meditation’ – being completely aware of the present while my body is moving.
Mindfulness has changed my life and every Monday on the program a new meditation will pop into your planner for you to use that week. When we spend more time in the present we become more patient, calm and connected to the earth.
There is a long list of wonderful breathing techniques out there that can help reduce stress and make you instantly feel better. Some of my favourites are box breathing, abdominal breathing or simply, equal breathing.
This involves taking long and slow inhalations and exhalations and being aware of how your body is responding. I do this as I get into bed before falling asleep to slow the heart rate and set my body up for a good nights’ rest.
A great way to get more bang for your mediation buck is to practice ‘grounding’ while you’re meditating. I lay outside on my balcony or when I can on the earth in the park or at the beach.
This immediately makes me feel safe and connected and there are studies that discuss the relationship of the electromagnetic fields in our body during this process.
Ihave a set of bars on our balcony outside and use it to hang upside down most days. The ‘reverse effect’ of gravity has a positive effect on my body and I notice it helps realign my body and reduce strain on joints. I feel like a kid again and that feels awesome too!
A good dose of Vitamin D has been shown to reduce stress levels and I notice a huge difference in my body, mood and hormonal activity when I expose my skin to the sun. I aim to see the sun every day if I can! In winter it’s a little more tricky but I take the good days when we get them.
6. Infrared saunas.
I have been using infrared saunas for a couple of years now and cannot recommend them enough. They not only help eliminate toxins and heavy metals from the body, but balance cortisol levels – the body’s main stress hormone. I try to make 1 session a week which is about 45 minutes in length. For extra points, use the sauna after a workout for a better recovery.
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