Your heart “races” when you’re upset, “pounds” when you’re angry, “skips” a beat when you’re anxious. What does all this mean? Stress!
We’ve gone through a stressful year or more, and many of us may still be enduring stress. Stress is an emotion that can affect all body systems; especially our heart and cardiovascular system.
How can you alleviate stress? One way is to meditate. It’s not hokey pokey, voodoo or chanting with incense. Meditation can be many things to different people, and in addition to relaxing you – studies have shown meditation actually lowers blood pressure - it can help to promote changes in unhealthy lifestyle behaviors, too.
Meditation can be done right at your desk, no matter where your desk is; in the middle of your day; before driving to or from work or taking the kids to some type of activity; or in a quiet moment at home.
Try one of these exercises the next time you are feeling stressed out!
- While seated, take five slow breaths. Breathe in for a count of 5, hold the breath for a count of 5, then exhale fully for a count of 5. Imagine the rays of the sun are warming your core, melting away your stress. Actually picture the stress leaving your body.
- Before you eat a meal, spend a few minutes just doing nothing. Perhaps inwardly express gratitude for your food. Then, be aware of what you are eating. Really taste and smell your food; think about where it came from, and chew slowly, savoring every bite. Have the whole family do this!
- Just be. Wherever you are, close your eyes, breathe naturally, and just take in your surroundings. What does your seat feel like? What is the temperature of the air around you? Do you smell anything? Just relax and let your surroundings take over for a minute or two. Then, open your eyes and proceed with your day – with renewed vigor!
Meditation can also help you sleep better, be healthier, have a better outlook on life in general, and make you be a kinder person. Who doesn’t need that? Give it a try!
If you think this is something your whole work team or office can use, give us a call. We can bring a class to you!
To Your Vitality!