Relaxation Techniques to reduce stress quick and easy ways
Relaxation techniques can reduce stress symptoms and help you enjoy a better quality of life, especially if you have an illness. Explore relaxation techniques you can do by yourself.
A few minutes of practice per day can help ease anxiety. “Research suggests that daily meditation may alter the brain’s neural pathways, making you more flexible to stress,” says psychologist Robbie Maller Hartman, PhD, a Chicago health and wellness coach.
It’s simple. Sit up straight with both feet on the floor. Close your eyes. Focus your attention on reciting — out loud or silently — a positive mantra such as “I feel at calm” or “I love myself.” Place one hand on your belly to sync the mantra with your breaths. Let any distracting thoughts float by like clouds.
2. Autogenic relaxation
Autogenic means something that comes from within you. In this relaxation technique, you use both illustration imagery and body awareness to reduce stress.
You repeat words or suggestions in your mind that may help you relax and reduce muscle tension. For example, you may imagine a peaceful setting and then focus on controlled, relaxing breathing, slowing your heart rate, or feeling different physical sensations, such as relaxing each arm or leg one by one.
3. Breathe Deeply
Take a 5-minute break and focus on your breathing. Sit up directly, eyes closed, with a hand on your belly. Slowly inhale through your nose, feeling the breath start in your abdomen and work its way to the top of your head. Reverse the method as you exhale through your mouth.
“Deep breathing counters the possessions of stress by slowing the heart rate and lowering blood pressure,” psychologist Judith Tutin, PhD, says. She’s a certified life coach in Rome, GA.
4. Body scan
This method 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 consciousness of the mind-body connection. If you have had a recent surgery that affects your body image or other difficulties with body image, this technique may be less helpful for you.
This is a bit of a buzz word at the instant. It’s quite closely linked with meditation. The idea is to be mindful of something and appreciate it in that present moment and block everything else out.
It may be appreciating the colour of a flower or examining a portion of jewellery to see how it was made. Focusing on the present can reduce stress.
Linda Blair clinical psychologist and writer of ‘The Key To Calm’ says you can practise mindfulness and relax in just 3 minutes.
“Turn off your screen, select a common object like a pencil or a penny (not your phone) and begin breathing very slowly focusing on the object and describing it to yourself in as much detail as you can. To focus completely and fully on something in the present is the spirit of mindfulness.”
She says it only takes 30 long breaths or about 3 minutes and it’ll make you feel very refreshed and ready to focus.
In this relaxation technique, you may form mental images to take a visual journey to a peaceful, calming place or position.
To relax using revelation, try to incorporate as many senses as you can, including smell, sight, sound and touch. If you imagine relaxing at the ocean, for instance, think about the smell of salt water, the sound of crashing waves and the warmth of the sun on your body.
You may want to close your eyes, sit in a quiet spot, loosen any tight clothing, and concentrate on your breathing. Aim to focus on the present and think positive feelings.
Place a warm heat wrap around your neck and shoulders for 10 minutes. Close your eyes and relax your face, neck, upper chest, and back muscles. Remove the wrap, and use a tennis ball or foam roller to rub away tension.
“Place the ball between your back and the wall. Lean into the ball, and hold gentle force for up to 15 seconds. Then move the ball to another spot, and apply pressure,” says Cathy Benninger, a nurse practitioner and assistant professor at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in Columbus.
8. 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 divert you from racing thoughts. They can also enhance your flexibility and balance. But if you are not normally active, have health troubles, or a painful or disabling condition, these relaxation techniques might be too challenging. Check with your doctor before starting them.
10. Listen to music
Music has the power to convert your mood. If you feel the tensions rising, stick on a little classical music to transport you to a higher plane or plug into your favourite song to transport you to good times and happy memories.
Listening to soothing music can lower blood pressure, heart rate and nervousness.
If you want to let off steam and get clear of pent up anger, stick on some rock or pop really loudly and belt out the song at the top of your voice.
Music therapy is a recognised way of humanizing mental health, according to the charity MIND.
11. Have a cuppa
It’s a well-known cliché that many-a-problem can be solved by putting the kettle on, or that a cup of tea’s the best thing to calm you down after a shock. The classic, common-sense way to relax may really work!
Camomile tea is the traditional favourite for calming the mind but even usual tea may help us fight stress.
A 2010 study at University College London originate that drinking black tea has a calming effect on stress hormone levels in the body.
Participants who drank regular black tea displayed lower levels of cortisol, and reported feeling mediator during 6 weeks of stressful situations than those who drink a placebo with the same amount of caffeine.