Anyone who experiences stress related symptoms will have been told to ‘relax’ and make life-style changes. This usually has the effect of making you feel more stressed and worse about yourself.
I first got interested in massage because I experienced life with a lot of anxiety and stress. Over the years, I’ve learned from many great teachers and have adapted from many traditions to manage my every-day tensions better. These days I’m pretty calm and happy but I do have to consciously manage my tension.
There are loads of small things that have made me feel better and helped to build more body awareness, but first I had to remember to do them! Here’s how…
Pick a trigger to remind you. The trigger should be something you do several times a day like – checking your phone, shutting the front door, doing the washing up, putting the kettle on, picking up your keys etc. With a little initial effort, you can link the trigger to an action that will make you feel better.
Small things that will help
The trick is to do tiny things that are easy to accomplish, so that you don’t have to waste energy making yourself do them or in feeling bad when you can’t keep them up. The little tricks on my list below can easily be squeezed into your life and done in a jiffy
They will have to be easy and they have to feel good!
- Belly breathing – feel your belly expand as you inhale
- Breath your shoulders up, back and exhale them down
- Lift your breast bone on an inhale, drop your shoulders on the exhale
- Consciously slow down
Just doing these small things a few times in your day will make a huge difference to how you manage your stress.
Remember that if it isn’t easy and/or fun, you won’t do it, so if one of my suggestions isn’t working for you either make it more fun or toss it in the bin.