Releasing stress and anxiety from your body is just as important as brushing your teeth, exercising or even drinking water.
We often speak of our mind and body as separate units but that couldn’t be further from the truth. When we are stressed, we’re affected everywhere. When we are anxious, we feel it with every ounce of our being. When you work on the physical aspects of stress and anxiety, it will have the ripple effect on your entire being, reducing physical symptoms as well as improving your mood and thinking.
Here are my favorite ways to exercise to release stress and anxiety in your body. Do these exercises once daily or when needed to let go of anxiety, stress or tension.
1. Conduct a body scan. Do this, wherever you are and any time you feel stressed or anxious. Closing your eyes or keeping them open, pay attention to your toes. Move to your feet, then ankles, then through each body part up to the top of your head. Increasing awareness of where you’re holding tension can help you know where to concentrate your relief efforts.
2. Tense and release muscle groups. Wherever you feel stress, pay attention to that area. Wiggle, massage, roll, and tense and release those areas, and it releases stress and anxiety.
3. Stretch and bend. Stand tall with your arms over your head, and then bend down to touch your toes, clasp your elbows, and very gently sway back and forth. Rise back up to stand. Bend to your left and to your right. Stand tall and twist to your right and left. Stretch, fold, bend, and twist many times throughout the day or whenever you need physical anxiety relief.
4. Breathe into all four sides of your torso. When you have anxiety or stress, slow, deep, breathing can be effective in inducing calm. With hands-on your abdomen, take a deep breath and feel your belly expand and contract.
5. Practice the cat-cow pose. This physical stretch is commonly known from yoga. Position yourself on all fours. As you inhale, drop your spine down and allow the shoulders, chin, and hips to stretch upward. Exhale and round through your shoulders, back, and hips the way a cat arches its back.
Whether it’s around the inside of your home or outside, get moving to release pent-up tension. Move at any speed that is comfortable and safe for you.
If you would like to learn more about how stress and anxiety can be helped, CALL our clinic today to set up a confidential assessment with our Registered Psychotherapist, Iain.
Yours in Health,