Updated: Jul 30, 2020
Relaxation is when the body and mind are free from tension and anxiety. Relaxation can help with improving coping with stress, which is the leading cause for physical and mental health problems.
Ask yourself, “What are your relaxation technique(s)? How often do you practice these techniques and do you feel relaxed?"
Relaxation Techniques to Reduce Stress – By Julie Corliss, Executive Editor, Harvard Heart Letter, reports, 1. Breath focus. In this simple, powerful technique, you take long, slow, deep breaths (also known as abdominal or belly breathing). As you breathe, you gently disengage your mind from distracting thoughts and sensations.
2. Body scan. This technique blends breath focus with progressive muscle relaxation. After a few minutes of deep breathing, you focus on one part of the body or group of muscles at a time and mentally releasing any physical tension you feel there. A body scan can help boost your awareness of the mind-body connection.
3. Guided imagery. For this technique, you conjure up soothing scenes, places, or experiences in your mind to help you relax and focus. You can find free apps and online recordings of calming scenes—just make sure to choose imagery you find soothing and that has personal significance.
4. Mindfulness meditation. This practice involves sitting comfortably, focusing on your breathing, and bringing your mind's attention to the present moment without drifting into concerns about the past or the future.
5. Yoga, tai chi, and qigong. These three ancient arts combine rhythmic breathing with a series of postures or flowing movements. The physical aspects of these practices offer a mental focus that can help distract you from racing thoughts.
I get it, who has time to relax and what does that look like for you? You have feelings of guilt if you take time out and go to the spa or a walk in the neighborhood. Life comes with so many challenges and celebration too. Now celebrate you, when no one else does. Full disclosure, I attempt to relax taking time outs and I found myself quietly going over my to-do list, which caused more stress. I have learned that I needed to update my playlist, take a big deep breath from my abdomen, and walk and sing, not caring about who can hear me.
I challenge you to #Taketime4You. This doesn't mean neglecting your responsibilities, it means taking a moment out of your day to pause and recharge.