Simple Ways To Ease Holiday Stress
Stress and anxiety reduce our happiness and ability to enjoy our lives and loved ones, and they also contribute to many types of afflictions of the body/mind. Here are simple and enjoyable ways to calm your stress response, especially useful during the busy holiday season:
- Breathing. Simple and easy, deep breathing reduces stress hormones and calms the nervous system. So next time you feel overwhelmed, pause and take some long, slow abdominal breaths.
- Stretching. The combination of aware breathing while you gently stretch or do yoga is a great relaxer.
- Massage. There’s nothing like a good massage to release tension and support organic healing in your body. A therapeutic massage can do a lot to rebalance the nervous system. Ask your partner to massage you, or nurture yourself with professional massage at Massage Therapy Center!
- Meditation. One benefit of meditation is that it allows the brain to relax for a bit and get integrated. Sit quietly and breathe in and out slowly, 10 times, with full awareness on where you feel each inhale and exhale in your body.
- Imagination. Visualize a scene in nature, a place that has brought you peace, and let calm wash over you. Or imagine a happy memory of a time when you felt at ease, and let yourself savor the feeling of the experience.
- Music. Peaceful music can reduce stress by activating bio-chemical mechanisms in the brain and stimulating relaxation.
- Walking. A quiet walk in the early morning or evening does wonders. If you can walk in trees or near water, it is especially beneficial.
- Tea. Sipping hot tea or water throughout the day soothes and calms the nervous system.
- Laughter. It’s not a myth that laughter is good medicine. It releases endorphins and muscle tension that reduce stress in the body. So watch a comedy or share laughs with family and friends.
A trip to Massage Therapy Center Palo Alto for a relaxing, therapeutic massage during the holidays can encompass many of the above activities! While you rest on the massage table as your therapist is working with you, you can bring your attention to breathing in and out slowly and know that you are in a place of comfort and safety. As you listen to the peaceful music during your session, imagine times you have felt nourished and taken care of. Afterwards have a cup of tea in our lobby, do some simple stretching, then walk around the neighborhood. There. Your body has just taken on a new wholesome feel!