Yoga has become an integral part of my life. It is a practice that is a lifestyle for many, at the most, and a means of exercise and stress management, at the least, for some. Regardless of how much or little that the practice of yoga occupies one’s life – it’ all good. Yoga is about balance. Yoga is about strength and calmness. It’s about developing and nurturing yourself. While you are on your mat, you focus on all of these aspects and for once it’s ok for it to be “all about me”.
If you are new to yoga, it would be great if you tried any intro or beginner class. You will find – I can guarantee- an atmosphere of TOTAL acceptance of simply who you are and where you are at. This is what is to be asked of you.
If Yoga is an established part of your life than lucky and wise you. I hope you find some of my future posts to be interesting. Feel free to add any comments or suggestions. Namaste
The important part of the title is “your approach”. Just like your own finger print, your stress is unique and the approach to deal with stress and anxiety is as individual as you.
- Thinking is an important aspect of any approach to daily stress or anxiety. The style of our thought patterns often plays a role in how we deal with challenges such as stressors or symptoms of anxiety. One of the Best approaches is seen in the Centre for Positive Psychology that is directed by Dr. Martin Seligman at the University of Pennsylvania.
2. Physical Activity remains an important part of any approach to the management of daily stress and symptoms of anxiety. There is quite a lot of research to support the benefits of regular exercise for mental and physical health. Especially exercise that you enjoy. I previously reviewed an article posted by the American Psychological Association.
Your Approach to Taking Care of Yourself is as Unique as your Fingerprint
3. Getting Help . Help can come in the form of a good book that you find to have the information that you need , such as Kabot-Zinn’s Full Catastrophie Living or a therapist who is trained in the area in which you need help. Psychologists and other mental health professionals, especially in private practices, are able to list the areas of specialty in their public listings. You can also see what organizations and licensing bodies they are affiliated with. If you feel that you need the assistance of a professional – it’s important to get someone suitable for you. Most will even answer questions before you make a commitment to refer yourself.
These are some key features that I recommend considering.. I’m interested in your views.
When you ask someone where they are truly at peace or some place where a person can go to collect themselves, you often get a variety of answers. Some people have that “special place” like a cottage or shore by the ocean that allows them to “get their head screwed on straight” realaxt heir thoughts or work through a problem by doing some serious thinking. Sadly, some people do not have such a place and feel trapped at times when the need is there to get away from it all.
It’s important to many to have an oasis, a sanctuary, an escape, or even a room in the house(or apartment) that they can call their own. Once there, it really doesn’t matter if you practice fancy mindfulness, meditation or Just Be. Simply being there on your own, feeling safe and calm , is sometimes enough. But if your place involves banging through the waves in a speed boat with the wind blowing through your hair – well that’s fine too. It’s your place.
The thing that is important is to be able to find that tranquility or space when you need it.
I’d be interested in other people’s experiences and what Your special place is.
Even though the list can be endless, I think that the following 5 components of tacking your stress are essential for any plan!
1 . ENJOY the activities that you are using to deal with your stress.
The American Heart Association has outlined the importance of actually incorporating enjoyable and pleasurable activities into your stress management plan. Doing things that you simply don’t enjoy does not work
2. Include Physical Exercise in you Stress and Anxiety Management.
3. Deal with Stress at Work.
4. Learn Assertiveness and Self Respect
5. Avoid the overuse of substances or artificial way to Reduce Stress .
Using substances like alcohol, drugs or ingestion of food and drinks such as cola or coffee can become an ineffective way – as well as problematic- to deal with stress. Simply put – It’s important to watch this aspect of your life and not make your “go to’s” a problem area for you. A relaxing coffee, tea, meal or other things like this can be a great part of your day. The National Library of Medicine has an interesting article on stress and vulnerability to addiction that is linked here.
Please add your comments and tips . This is just part of a plan for stress and anxiety management that can be effective.
Mindfulness, first made really popular by John Kabot-Zinn (sp) the author of “Full Catastrophe Living”, wanted people to be able to be present in their own experience of stress, joy, excitement and just simply the human experience. We now have a wide variety of “Mindful” approaches to stress anxiety and life management. Ultimately it’s the experience of living a moment in the fullest and hopefully feeling positive, aware and good.
We can all be our own experts on developing an approach that is unique and effective for each of us. The other day I was caught in a moment where I watched some spring chickadees at my bird feeder as I pulled into my driveway. A few minutes passed as I watched them fly to and from the protection of a nearby bush. I really didn’t think about it as mindfulness at the time but I was not thinking about anything else for those few minutes except the two small creatures and the beauty of the scene (cue the music). Anyway, that a mindful experience.
I’d be interested to hear about the experiences of others.
Yes, It’s May and in most places, at least in North America, the weather is beginning to warm and people’s thoughts turn to outside, vacations, cottages and the fun and relaxation that comes with the season ahead . However, for some, spring is a difficult time. There are some people with a form of seasonal affective disorder that actually have a difficult time with anxiety and mood in the spring of the year. Also, this time of year is sometimes simply a challenging time for some due to life circumstances.
It’s important to get the appropriate treatment and consult with a professional on this. For most people, it’s important to take advantage of this time of year and really incorporate things like exercise, leisure and relaxation – in whatever form you wish- into your routine. Try reading your morning paper with your tea/coffee outside on the front step, do your morning yoga on the patio , take that evening walk in the spring air. Cardiovascular exercise is always a good idea for mental and physical health.
I’d like to hear your ideas and comments.