One of the most common things I hear people complain about, regardless of it is at work or at school or just in daily interactions; is being busy.
These days a high stress, fast paced, adrenaline pumping lifestyle is something we have all become used to. It seems only normal now to not be able to relax until 9pm at night when you feel like you have been hit by a car. Why is it that we wait until we are at our breaking point to allowing ourselves to let go?
I am certainly just as guilty of this as the next person. And lately it has become apparent to me that this way of life is extremely detrimental to your health. Stress puts your immune system at risk, as well as raising your blood pressure and wrecking havoc on your digestive track (which I know too well, more on that in a later post)
Today I thought I would just focus on one thing that has dramatically changed the way in which I relax in high stress situations such as public speaking, big tests, doctors visits and even traffic.
Breathe. Now this may seem incredibly cliche, but there is a science to it. One of the first things that will benefit you when it comes to breathing which may seem rather obviously but I will say it anyways is the release of toxins. Your body releases somewhere been 65-70% of toxins through breathe. If that isn’t enough motivation on its own I don’t know what is.
Breathing reduces the amount of carbon dioxide in the blood and increases the amount of oxygen saturation, so with every breathe you are getting healthier blood and better blood to support your body and subsequently lower your blood pressure. By lowering your blood pressure you are counter acting the response we talked about earlier when your body encounters stress.
Trust me and try this next time you are feeling extremely stressed or even slightly overwhelmed. Take a deep breathe through your nose and feel your belly expand with air (in yoga we call this belly breathing) hold this air for five seconds or longer and release through your mouth slowly. Repeat 3-5 times depending on if you are the type of person who gets slightly lightheaded from the extra oxygen. In every situation where I have applied this method I can literally feel my heart and mind slow down. Everything becomes less of a stressor when you give yourself the permission just to breathe.