Staying Healthy Requires "Addressing the Stress"
Stress is the #1 contributor for the onset of headaches, pain, fatigue, lack of focus and a host of other physiological and emotional symptoms. During the holiday season there is often an additional serving of stress. :) There will always be things, people or circumstances coming into our sphere of life that can grate on our nerves and uproot our sense of balance. Managing these triggers is necessary so that we can live the life we desire, and keep our physical and mental well-being in balance.
3 Steps for Managing Stress
#1 - Rest:
Seems like a simple thing to do, but as a culture we believe that we should always be DOING. As a result, our bodies are often in "fight or flight" mode, keeping the sympathetic nervous symptom constantly activated due to a perceived threat. This can create anxiety, elevated blood pressure, heart palpitations and muscle tension.. Because stressors tend to reoccur daily, our nervous system can remain in a constant state of high alert, releasing the stress hormone Cortisol. Cortisol interferes with learning and memory, lowers immune function and bone density, and contributes to weight gain, high cholesterol, and heart disease. Allowing our mind, body and spirit to rest and rejuvenate is necessary to the quality and longevity of our health.
#2 - Reassess:
Instead of always doing, we need to focus more time on BEING. This is a time to look at our priorities, what, if anything we can let go of in that moment, or that day, and accept that if we don't accomplish the 50 things we have on our to-do list, our world won't fall apart. Putting constant pressure on ourselves to do more and be more assumes the idea that we aren't good enough. This perpetuates a continual "fight or flight" state that can look like anxiety, irritability, frustration or depression. Even though we are mentally and physically tired, the innate drive to survive pushes us beyond our limits, adding continual stress to our body, and consequently our emotional and spiritual well-being. It becomes a vicious cycle that is very difficult to stop.
#3 - Rejuvenate:
Implementing daily and weekly rituals that actively replenish our reserves is important in restoring our Yin or Source Energy. The activities and stress of the day slowly uses up our Yin and if we don't replace it, the systems of our body won't function optimally. Our brain chemistry will be affected, our immune system will be compromised and we open ourselves up to illness and injury. It is NOT a weakness to exercise self-care and employ health practices to benefit our well-being. We maintain our cars, appliances, homes, and put hours of planning and care into our careers. Doesn't our body and soul deserve the same attention?
EMPLOYING THE STEPS
REST can look like a hot bath with epsom salts, reading a book, unplugging from technology, or just taking a nap. It can be sitting outside and enjoying the sounds of nature while listening to your favorite music. Alone time. Simply put... It is spending time without expectation that anything has to be done.
REASSESSING our level of doing, and noticing what we HAVE accomplished can recenter your thinking.. The simple process of writing down what you have done each day can help your mind solidify how much you've actually done (a personal favorite). What can I let go of today? How Can I be more compassionate with myself? Is what I'm doing serving my well-being?
REJUVENATE your energy and Yin with immune supporting herbs like Ginger, Turmeric, Cinnamon, Elderberry and Echinacea. Eat whole foods, and enjoy energy raising activities such as dance, yoga, or gigong. Use healing modalities such as Massage, Acupuncture or Infrared heat to invigorate and align all of the systems of the body. Take some weight off your shoulders... Receive personal and Spiritual support.
RECOMMENDED HERB FOR STRESS
In the ancient Vedic Bhagavata Purana text, Holy Basil or Tulsi, called “Queen of Herbs,” is noted as the plant embodiment of Lakshmi, wife of Vishnu and the goddess of wealth and generosity. Tulsi is viewed as a living gateway between heaven and earth, and regarded as the manifestation of the divine within the plant kingdom. Tulsi has been used for thousands of years to support a healthy response to physical, emotional, and environmental stress. It helps support healthy blood sugar levels, promotes longevity, nourishes the mind and elevates the spirit.
Try: Organic India Tulsi Tea
December 11, 6:30-8 pm, Office of Evolution Acupuncture
Create Your Healing Practice With Gua Sha
Saturday, January 18, 10-11:30 am, West Valley CSL
Sunday, January 26, 12-1:30 pm, New Vision Center
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