There are many simple ways to relax naturally in order to reduce both physical and mental stress. Light exercises, deep breathing, meditation and a hot bath, are excellent and yet very simple ways to relax.
Being able to reduce stress naturally can help to eliminate the need for counseling or for certain medications. It can help one to sleep better at night, improve the functions of the mind, as well as reduce the risk of a variety of both physical and mental diseases.
Most of the ways mentioned in this article can be done in the comfort of the home; in the morning, just before bedtime or at any time during the day, whenever stress levels begin to build up.
Taking a deep breath at the first sign of any type of stress is very effective. A deep breath allows the body to take in more oxygen for the brain and muscle cells. As a result, both the physical and emotional muscles are able to relax more.
The correct way to breathe is through the diaphragm. When breathing in this manner, the belly pushes outward during the breath in, and returns to normal as the breath is exhaled. It basically allows the lungs to expand all the way in order to increase the flow of oxygen.
Deep meditation takes a lot of practice. I’ve been practicing it for a while now, and I’m still not very good at it. But the more you practice, the more effective it becomes.
There are several ways to meditate.
One of them is that you meditate on your problem and look at it from different perspectives. A lot of times we experience emotions but have no idea why we are feeling the way we do. This type of meditation helps you to analyze the situation and allows you to dig down to the bottom and see the truth. Seeing the truth on any given matter will enable you to relax. Jesus put it this way: “And ye shall know the truth and the truth will set you free.” However, that only applies if you love the truth because if you don’t, then it will make you uncomfortable.
The other form of meditation, and this is the one that takes a lot of practice, helps you to let go of everything. The goal is for you to shift your focus away from your problem and onto something else like your own body. The techniques used are very powerful at raising self awareness and increasing the functions of the mind.
If you are new to this, you might want someone to guide you through the process in order to help you stay more focused.
If you can tolerate a hot bath, then that is the way to go. Otherwise, a warm bath is more suitable. The water helps to naturally relax the muscles and increases the blood flow throughout the body. A plain hot bath will work, but you can also add essential oils, herbs and spices, or epsom salt, to the water for even greater results.
Soak Up the Sun
There is nothing more relaxing than to take a bath in the sun. The best time to go out is in the morning or early evening when the sun is warm but not too warm. The heat of the sun naturally detoxes the body and allows it rest easier. Laying out in the sun is also a good time to meditate and let go of whatever is bothering you.
A Walk or a Swim
Going for a walk when you are stressed is a good way to let go. It’s a good time to think about what is going on in your life, thus making it a great therapist. Walking barefoot on the beach or in the park are excellent ways to detox and relax naturally through the ground.
Swimming can also be very relaxing for those who can swim. And for those who can’t, simply being in water can be very therapeutic as well.
Light yoga exercises that focus on breathing and stretching are very effective at reducing stress. When the muscles in the body are stretched, it increases the blood circulation, which has a very relaxing effect.
One very effective pose for relaxing is where you sit cross legged with your eyes closed. Your attention is fixed on the forehead and between the eyes, and all you do breathe in and breathe out. You can relax both palms on your knees or you can use one hand to close off one nostril as you breathe in, then switch to the other nostril as you breathe out.
Most everyone has at least one hobby that they can escape with into another world. If you don’t have one, you might want to pick one up. It can be anything that relaxes the mind and body, such as fishing, carpentry, crocheting, knitting, cooking or raw food “cooking”. There are no rules as to what you can do as long as it is something that relaxes the mind and body.
Enjoy a Hot Tea
Herbal tea has zero calories, is caffeine free, and does not contain any substances that are harmful to health. It is therefore, the perfect beverage to enjoy when you are stressed.
There are many teas to choose from and you might have to try a variety before you find one that you really like. Celestial Seasonings is a good place to start, but you might also like loose leaf tea, which you can get at many health food stores.
One of my personal favorites for relaxing is tulsi tea, also known as Holy Basil. The aroma alone is enough to calm you down, let alone the taste. In addition, tulsi is an adaptogen, which means that it helps the body to adapt to a variety of different stressors.
Another great tea is matcha. My favorite way to enjoy it is in a latte with a bit of coconut oil. Click here for recipe.
When the body has proper nutrients it is more likely to remain calm in just about any situation. Plant-based foods are the best foods for providing the body with many nutrients, whereas anything artificial can deplete the body. Animal foods are okay for nutrition as well as long as they are raised naturally.
Watch a Good Comedy Movie
I normally don’t advocate watching television. In some cases, however, it can be therapeutic if you opt for a good comedy or family movie. Try to stay away from the drama and crime movies as they will have a negative effect.
One of the temptations of watching television is to eat while watching. Although there is nothing wrong with it, it nevertheless can lead to overeating, which is very stressful to the body.
If you are going to be eating while watching, try to opt for plant-based foods including salads, trail mixes or vegetable soups. That way you can still nourish the body even if you tend to overeat a bit.