18 Nov Calm in 5
Have you noticed an increase in stress within yourself or the world around us? I have noticed moments lately when my heart is racing for no apparent reason.
Well, maybe our “24/7” society is reason enough. Technology has amped up the expectations of response time in a culture of 24/7 accessibility. We assume immediate reply from others and feel the pressure to respond immediately in kind.
Our bodies are beautifully designed to react to our environment in order to survive and to thrive. When it is in balance, our bodies use the stress response to give us the adrenaline we need to respond optimally to our environment in order to perform our best. However, just looking at an email inbox can also activate this response in the body. The body sends out (stress) hormones as signals to get us ready to act. We are ready to jump, run or fight with each potentially triggering email we open or text we receive. In our technologically colored 24/7 world, we can get stuck in the “ON” mode. As our heart rate stays elevated and stress hormone cortisol runs rampantly through our system, it can have a negative impact on our physical, mental and emotional well being.
Have you felt any signs of this? Some symptoms include difficulty with sleep, constant worrying, irritability or short temper, feeling overwhelmed, depressed, weak immune system, chest pain, and eating or using substances to relax.
What can we do?
The good news is…we can teach our bodies to relax through a simple exercise.
We can turn off the constant “ON” button of the stress response, even if we cannot physically stop the pace of the external world. We can create health in our bodies to avoid burnout and work at peak performance. The power of this exercise is that it is like building a muscle. We can practice it anytime, so in a moment of distress, we are in the habit of using this helpful tool.
Benefits of feeling calm and steady
- More productivity
- Clearer decision making and problem solving
- Improved communication/ relationships
- Enhanced job and life satisfaction
Commit to this exercise for 5 minutes each day this week and see how you handle your next stressful situation. May you enjoy these moments of calm and steady.