How many times have you felt overwhelmed, stressed, and out of balance. You've noticed feelings of desperation to find clarity and "get" through this difficult time... You are not alone... Learning to surrender and just breathe is TRULY a skill set. It takes time, diligence and persistence. The motto of practice makes perfect, couldn't apply more here. When the world seems to be crashing down, it is THEN in THAT moment, all the more, that we need to embrace how feel, be ONE with it and simply breathe...finding a sense of surrender in knowing that a higher power is in control. One doesn't necessarily need to be religious to adopt this concept/belief. How can you possibly handle all that life throws at you and still manage to stay optimistic when it feels like you can't even breathe.
Sometimes just stopping what you're doing... taking a moment to just breathe...feel the breath, feel your body, notice if your breath is shallow and attempt to make it deeper... Start in the belly. Act as though there's a balloon in the belly, and move it up the spine into the chest and lungs... continue to expand with the inhalation and smooth out each exhalation. Notice that after 5-10 breaths, the rate of your breathing has significantly slowed. You feel less anxiety and much more calm. The reality is that we truly choose how we react. We choose to "freak out" over the stresses that come our way in the midst of our random Tuesday afternoon. Isn't it true? Next time you are faced with a minor hiccup or a serious chapter of adversity, put these tips to the test. See for yourself... I know personally how many times I have needed to take a step back and reassess when I have found myself struggling to find peace.
The breath work can be done in a chair while you're at work, lying on the floor or bed comfortably. Some clients have additional relief of anxiety by furthering their breath and implementing gentle stretching exercises. I will walk you though some stretches if you were in a chair at a desk... Both feet are hip distance. Grow your spine as tall as possible and slowly lean forward toward your feet. Once you get the torso folded, softly release the neck. Hold for 5-10 long, slow breaths... to come back upright, walk the hands up the shins and begin to flatten the back and then slowly bring the back upright being perpendicular to the hips.
The next stretch is a hip opener. We hold many emotions in the hips. How many times have you have a massage and the therapist told you how tight your hips were? I am also a massage therapist, so I know all too well that this is truly the culprit to so many of our back ailments. Sitting at a chair, both feet hip distance, knees bent...takes the heel of one foot, cross it to the thigh of the other leg, just above the knee, but not on the knee... sit as tall as possible and then gently fold forward until you feel mild tension. Never pain. If you feel pain back off immediately. You should feel like you can breathe comfortable and notice a gentle release through the back of the hip and hamstring. 8 of 10 people will experience back pain at some point in their lives. By stretches the major muscles that house the spine you significantly reduce the chances of this happening.