The Gift of Active Relaxation

stress-391657_1280The Gift of Active Relaxation

With the United States election season in full swing, many are feeling stress and anxiety stirred up by the increasing polarized political climate.  If you are feeling the strain of election season, here are a few simple suggestions to help you ground and reconnect.

  1. Unplug.  The constant news cycle isn’t healthy or relaxing for anyone.  Choose to engage with media on your own terms and in limited amounts.  Also, I’m a firm believer in the “don’t read the comments” approach.
  2. Get outside!  Take a walk with a family member or friend.  Go for a hike, bike, swim or run.  Move your body. No matter what the election outcome, you still have a physical body that loves to connect with fresh air and movement.  Don’t neglect that part of yourself.
  3. Get some quality sleep.  Turn off your electronics, get into bed and enjoy the physical and mental break that sleep provides.  You will be glad tomorrow morning that you got that extra sleep rather than reading that 100th political post or watching that 1000th cat video.
  4. Breathe and let go.  Control what you can in your own life so that you are making choices that are in alignment with your own values.  Recognize that you can only control your own choices and behavior and release the rest.
  5. Practice active relaxation techniques.  Meditate.  Practice guided relaxations.  Practice mindful breathing.  Active relaxation is different than cruising social media or watching TV.  While there may be a time and place for those activities, they do not replace an active relaxation practice or have the same health and relaxation benefits.  I have included a few options to help and support you in this area below.

Relaxation support options…

Here are a couple ideas to promote active relaxation for you.

  1. If you are a bath person, soaking in the tub is a great form of relaxation.  You can pair this with number 2.
  2. Listen to some music that you find relaxing.  Musical preferences vary widely, however something with a slower beat that approximates a regular, rhythmic heartbeat can extra soothing.  Play with options with and without lyric and notice how they make you feel.
  3. Practice mindful breathing.  This can be as simple as making a few moments to get quiet and pay attention to your breath.  If you want more help and guidance with this practice, check out the Breathe Easy products and programs.  There are many posts on the Back In Body Blog that share breathing guidance and suggestions as well.
  4. Practice actively tuning in and then consciously relaxing different parts of your body.  If you want more help and guidance with this practice, you can enjoy listening to audio guided relaxations from Relaxation Station any time.
  5. Mindful snuggling/cuddling with a partner, child, friend or pet.  Spend some time enjoying the healing benefits of physical contact.  Double points if you check in with your breath during this time.

Hopefully these ideas help you to navigate this time with more comfort and ease.  I wish you a day of full spacious breaths, a bit of movement and a bit of rest in whatever ways and amounts you like!

<3 Martha

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