Chronic stress and anxiety are all too common in our fast-paced, over-worked, overwhelmed society. There are so many pressures coming at us from all sides that it’s difficult to take a step back and remove oneself from the constant state of alarm. If a friend, family member, or colleague suggests that you “should take time to relax” it’s common to feel quite a strong sense of resistance. “How can I relax when there’s no time, and there’s so much to worry about?” Unfortunately, not taking a moment to reset one’s stress levels has some dire and permanent consequences physically, emotionally and psychologically. Our relationships and work performance ultimately suffer. The good news is that there is a really quick and easy way to reduce stress in just a few minutes a day.
When we are stressed, our sympathetic nervous system (SNS) is activated. This is the system that is responsible for our 5F response (fight, flight, freeze, fidget and faint). In order to counteract this response, we need to activate our parasympathetic nervous system (PNS), also known as the rest & digest system. Each time you inhale, your SNS is activated, and each time you exhale, your PNS is activated. So, breathe in for five seconds, then slowly breathe out for 10 seconds. And repeat. The long exhalations “trick” your nervous system into a non-stressed state. Even if you can manage only a few minutes a day, this exercise will help to reset the alarm bells and provide a few minutes away from the chaos in which we are currently existing.
More details in this video: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=267244374307553