Yoga for Stress Relief
Some stress in any job is normal, but too much stress can lead to major health problems. Signs and symptoms of stress can include muscle tension, headaches, neck and back pain and irritability just to name a few. Identifying the sources of stress in the workplace and finding effective ways to manage stress can dramatically improve overall quality of life. This is where using yoga for stress relief comes into play.
While yoga is traditionally thought of as a physical practice, we can learn to take the principles of yoga off of our mats and incorporate them into our everyday lives. Let's explore mindfulness rituals that we can incorporate into our daily routines:
Morning reflection - Start the morning off with quiet contemplation and a moment of gratitude. Just sit and be present, be aware of your breath, and think positive thoughts before rushing into the day.
Set a simple intention - What is it you wish to accomplish during the day, for example, staying focused or improving attitude. Do it without judgement and focus on all the positive aspects of your intention.
Breathe mindfully - Yes we breathe all day every day, hence we're still here! But are we really aware and conscious of how we breathe? Is it long deep and full or short and tense? Schedule breaks to take full, deep breaths throughout the day.
Take time to meditate - Walking meditation is usually well-suited for work as it allows movement of the body and allowing a change in scenery to clear the mind of clutter and tension.
Eat with intention - It’s all about the lunch! How much time do we spend thinking about lunch during the day? Try to eat more nutritious food regularly throughout the day- food that will fuel your mind and body, help with energy levels and mental focus. Drink LOTS of water- fruit or lemon infused.
Maintain a work-life balance - Know when to disconnect. Constant connection increases stress. At the end of the day, go back over your check list one more time, don’t be hard on yourself if you did not accomplish a few things. There is always tomorrow! Pick that dreaded task out from today and set a goal to tackle it first thing tomorrow.
Take time throughout the day to go back to your intentions, especially toward the mid afternoon times when the day drags on endlessly. Now would be a good time to get into a few yoga stretches. Take a music break. Go for a walk or repeat an affirmation or mantra a few times.
End your work day in silence and gratitude the same way you start: quiet positive reflection and maybe get in a little yoga practice before heading home!
Emey Robinson is a certified Hatha/Vinyasa Yoga instructor with specialized training in Theraputic, Restorativ,e Chair, Prenatal, Kids and Thai Yoga Massage.
Visit Emey's Facebook page to learn more about her teachings.