Your body’s fight or flight response is triggered whenever it is exposed to sudden stress or threat. Adrenaline is then released from adrenal glands, resulting in faster breathing, increased blood flow to muscles and a spike in blood pressure. When your body responds to situations that aren’t life-threatening in the same way, it’s essentially a false alarm. However, too many false alarms can lead to stress-related disorders such as insomnia, migraine headaches, high blood pressure, heart disease and immune disorders. While we can’t take the stress out of everyday life, we can learn to relax and manage stress effectively.
Relaxation is the process of decreasing the effects of stress on your body and mind. By learning relaxation techniques, you can help your body better cope with stress and stress-related health issues and ultimately manage them in the long run. Relaxation techniques don’t cost anything and are very easy to learn. You can do them nearly anywhere, any time you feel overwhelmed.
Effects of Relaxation Techniques on Your Body
Relaxation techniques might not be a priority in your life when faced with tasks and responsibilities or the demands of everyday life. But, if you don’t make time for it, you will miss out on all the health benefits of relaxation. Here’s how practising relaxation techniques can benefit you:
- Slow down breathing
- Slow down heart rate
- Lower blood pressure
- Improve digestion
- Improve sleep quality and reduce fatigue
- Improve mood and concentration
- Reduce chronic pain and muscle tension
- Reduce frustration and anger
- Decrease the activity of stress hormones
- Increase blood flow to muscles
- Maintain blood sugar levels
- Boost confidence to manage issues
If you use relaxation techniques to reduce stress along with other coping methods such as reaching out to supportive friends and family, positive thinking, time management, exercising, and finding humour in the small things, you will reap the most benefits.
Meditation is the process where one learns to focus their attention on something like breathing or by repeating a mantra over and over to help you relax. This helps to clear the mind of rambling thoughts and results in a state of mental calmness and relaxation. Regular meditation practice can change how you react to thoughts and emotions.
Deep breathing, also the foundation of other relaxation exercises, is one of the simplest stress management and relaxation techniques to learn. The best part is that you can practice it anywhere. Our body’s automatic reaction to stress is shallow breathing. By taking deep, slow breaths, we can increase our relaxation response and decrease our stress reaction.
Instant Relaxation Technique You Can Do Anywhere
- Find a quiet space, get comfortable, close your eyes and focus your attention on your breathing.
- Put one hand on your stomach to feel the rise and fall.
- Slowly breathe in through your nose and exhale through your mouth.
- Repeat this relaxation technique until you feel relaxed.
- Practice deep breathing for a few minutes several times a day.
For more information or help with relaxation techniques and meditation, feel free to get in touch with one of the professional coaches at Integrative Coaching. We can help you learn progressive muscle relaxation techniques so you can relax your mind and body. Give us a call to book your free session today.