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From Chaos to Calm: Discovering Inner Peace through Effective Stress Management Techniques


Black woman with her eyes closed trying to manage her stress
Woman trying to calm herself

Hello World!


What the F%#*k happened these past couple years?


As if life wasn’t stressful enough already.


Admit it! We’ve all been through a lot!


Remember the toilet paper shortage!!! lol


it’s no wonder people are all stressed out right now.


Gas prices - sky rocketing!

Groceries- tripled!

Health issues - climbing!

Increase in Deaths - causes unknown!

Needless to say,

There’s a lot of uncertainty in the air!


Whether it’s society issues, work pressures, family or financial responsibilities, or simply navigating day-to-day challenges,

stress is something we all experience.


And actually,

Beyond all that exterior stress, people are pretty good at creating their own stress, like when they worry, doubt, or have fears of the unknown, etc, etc.


Let’s get one thing straight …

A little stress is not bad, it can actually help us stay motivated and alert.

But when you have too much stress, and you’re not managing it -

that’s when it becomes a problem!


And it’s sneaky! Some call it the slow killer!

So pay attention to your body signals.


Signals like tension and tightness in the body, headaches, constipation, and body aches are all signs of stress. When stress is not managed it can take a toll on our physical and mental health and lead to things like anxiety and depression, and eventually the accumulation of stress can lead to a whole bunch of serious health conditions.

In fact, Stress is the root cause of most major diseases!!!


So in a minute I'll share what you can do to manage your stress, but first I thought it would help if you understand what actually happens in the body in reaction to stress?


When we experience stress, our body goes into "fight or flight" mode, releasing hormones like cortisol and adrenaline that are suppose to help us respond to a perceived threat (like as if you're being chased by a lion).

But oftentimes there is no perceived threat, so instead of the hormones getting used up to run away from the lion, the hormones/stress just accumulates in the system.


Side note: this is why stress can cause belly fat … because too much cortisol causes belly fat.


What happens when stress accumulates in the mind and body?


So, when stress becomes chronic and it accumulates in the body, it has physical and mental repercussions. Physically it can have a range of negative effects, such as,

increased blood pressure, weakened immune function, increasing muscle tension, digestive problems, as well as more serious health issues like heart disease, stroke, and diabetes.


Mentally, chronic stress can contribute to

anxiety, depression, and other mood disorders, as well as cognitive problems like memory loss and difficulty concentrating.


The final mind blower, stress can make you age quicker!

Yikes!

Now this may sound cray cray, but have no fear …

As long as you manage your stress properly - you'll be Fine!


So lets talk about the most effective stress management techniques:


Thank god there are ways to effectively manage stress so it doesn’t have to accumulate and reac havoc on your system!


The best stress management strategy includes practices for the following 3 stages.


Stage 1: Become Aware

Awareness is always step one. Become aware of what is stressing you out, so that you can be purposeful in your stress management.


Stage 2: Release & Let Go

These are practices that help you release and let go of whatever it is that is stressing you out.


Stage 3: Balance your Nervous System

These are practices that help you relax and shift into your parasympathetic nervous system. Your rest and digest and healing side of your nervous system. This is where you will discover a deeper sense of Inner Peace.

This is what really makes that difference between just managing your stress and truly discovering inner peace.


The best stress management results come when you’re able to go through all 3 stages. This is an amazing strategy to fully manage your stress and discover true Inner Peace.


Stage 1: Awareness

Of course, being aware of what is stressing you out, sets the stage to be able to work through it. To process your stress. This is where we begin working intentionally. When using any of the following practices, set the intention to become aware of anything that is creating stress in your life so that you can process it.


Practices for Awareness:



A white woman meditating in half lotus pose
Stress Management thru Meditation


Meditation:

The practice of meditation helps us become more aware in general. Meditation involves things like focusing on the present moment without judgment or distraction, quieting the thinking mind and observing any thoughts that drift through the mind and connecting to your inner world. Meditation is also a great way to discover what's ruminating in the subconscious mind, which could be forms of self induced stress (worries, doubts, fears). The process of becoming aware of the thoughts in your subconscious mind is very important … your subconscious mind is 80 % of your mind … so guess who’s runnin’ the show guys?

And if you don’t know what is ruminating in there - you could have something you really don't want looping through your subconscious mind … pointing you in the WRONG direction!

So let’s all get on the meditation train and find out what we need to break through, shift and change so we can create our lives on purpose!

Practicing meditation regularly is a great way to become more self aware, reduce stress and improve your overall well-being


Breathwork:

1st of all, simply observing your breath or practicing relaxing deep breaths will help you become aware of your state of being. Your state of being is one of the best stress indicators. If your breath is short and shallow, you’re probably stressed. When you’re breathing deep and calm easily, chances are you’re not stressed.

There are also several different Breathing Techniques that are very good for centering, focusing and becoming more aware.


Journaling:

Journaling helps us uncover the layers in our mind and then discover what’s ruminating in our subconscious mind. We can also ask questions in our journaling and let our pen do the walking across the paper revealing the answers. So you’re question might be something like,


What, if anything, is preventing my complete inner peace and relaxation?


A black girl and an asian girl laughing socializing
2 girls supporting each other

Social Support:

Don’t under-estimate the power of chatting with your friends and family. We can become aware of so many things through conversations with the people we trust. It can also be stress relieving to verbalize your “stuff”.



Stage 2: Release & Let Go:

When you break it all down, everything is energy. So when we talk about stress in our bodies, it’s just stuck energy in your system. Practices to release and let go are types of movement that help you shake things up and move them out of your system. These practices are all great to reduce stress and anxiety and promote greater health and well-being.


Practices to Release and Let Go:


Dance:

Dance is probably the very best at Releasing and Letting Go of stress. It involved the whole body moving in all different directions. Freestyle/Freeform dancing is probably the very best at Releasing and Letting Go, because of the nature of the free flowing movement.


If you'd like to be guided through a quick dance session now ;-) feel free to click here (you must be a Complete Vitality Member to access this)


Also with Freeflow a person can be completely out of their head and in their body, intentionally letting go and letting that vibe guide the dance.


Exercise:

Medium to vigorous Physical Activity can help you Release and Let Go of stressors. Things like hiking, biking, roller blading, skateboarding, taking an exercise class and lifting weights can all help you forget about your burdens and lighten your load. It helps to set an intention before setting out on the trails or jumping on your skateboard.


HINT: if it’s something you enjoy, chances are it will be a much better stress reducer, than something you’re not crazy about. And by all means - if you’re hating every minute of your exercising, try something different!


If you'd like to be guided through a quick exercise session now ;-) feel free to click here (you must be a Complete Vitality Member to access this)



Singing or Playing an Instrument:

For some this could be stress inducing …lol … that is if you’re not comfortable with expressing yourself musically.

For those of you who do love to express yourself through music, banging the drums or belting out a song - could be the best thing for you to Release and Let Go!


Stage 3: Nervous System Shift

We spend most of our time in our Sympathetic Nervous System - Our “Fight or Flight” side of our Nervous System. If we want to fully manage stress and come to a place of INNER PEACE, we need to balance our nervous system and spend more time in our Parasympathetic Nervous System - our rest and digest and healing side. This is the final piece in stress management that is often missing.


Practices to Shift into your Parasympathetic Nervous System



Restorative Yoga:

Restorative Yoga does an amazing job at shifting you into your parasympathetic nervous system. The practice is designed to help you slow down your state so you can restore your body and nervous system, while resting in completely supported poses. There’s plenty of time in each pose for your mind and body to unwind, tension and tightness melt away as you drift into a deep state of Peace and Relaxation.


If you'd like to be guided through a Restorative Yoga Session now ;-)

feel free to click here (you must be a Complete Vitality Member to access this)

Someone playing 2 Singing bowls
Crystal Singing Bowls

Sound Healing, aka Sound Bath or Sound Journey.

Listening to very relaxing music can help you slow down your state of being and get into your parasympathetic nervous system. Some sound healers will also use specific frequencies like the 432 hz to help you slow down to the resonance of nature. Sound Baths typically use ambient soundscapes and instruments like Crystal or Tibetan Singing Bowls, Flutes and Gong’s.

Music with a lot of space between the notes is typically more relaxing.

For example, if someone was playing the harp - they would strum it slowly and let the echoing sound fill the air before strumming it again … creating this long space for people to breathe slowly with it.


Deep Breathing:

There are many different breath techniques that are stress relieving and balance your nervous system. For example, Gradually slowing your breath down, increasing the length of your inhales and exhales can help you shift into your parasympathetic nervous system. This helps to reduce stress and promote peace and relaxation.


Upper Back Breathing:

is also very effective in stress reduction and shifting into your parasympathetic nervous system. Physical therapists call this the tylenol for the upper back because it melts away tension from the inside out … using your breath to stretch the inside walls of your lungs and rib cage in your upper back region.


If you'd like to be guided through Upper Back Breathing ;-)

feel free to click here (you must be a Complete Vitality Member to access this)


Another great relaxing breath technique, is to exhale 2 counts longer than your inhales. Breath in for 4 slow counts, exhale for 6 slow counts.


Now it's time to incorporate the above techniques into your lifestyle. Do not think you can go to one sound bath a year and you're good! lol


The key is to create a lifestyle that includes these techniques regularly! Choose the ones that resonate with you the most.


If you're interested in learning and experiencing some of these techniques,

I will be doing a MOVEMENT, BREATH and SOUND HEALING WORKSHOP

with The Soul Spa at LA DanceFit ... April 2, 2023 ... 6-8pm


In conclusion,

managing stress is essential for maintaining overall health and well-being. By understanding the effects of stress on the mind and body and adopting a variety of effective stress management techniques, you can reduce the negative effects of stress and find inner peace in your daily life.


So take a deep breath, relax, and start managing your stress today!








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