Stress is part and parcel of life and extremely difficult to avoid especially in today’s fast and modern life. The good news is that Stress is completely manageable and in less than 15 minutes you can regain control of your life. One of the most important rules is to make sure that you don’t let the trivial stresses build up into something bigger and harder to control. Taking action at the onset of stress can prove to be highly effective and easy to deal with.
I have put together 4 simple and easy-to-follow steps backed by scientific study and research that will leave you feeling “on top of the world” in less than 15 minutes. These steps are based on the teaching of Yoga and Ayurveda and are 100% safe and natural. Always ensure that you take a 10-15 minutes break between one stressful task and the next- at work, home, in crowded places or even in your free time. This short break will give your mind and body some space to unwind and will prevent your stress from building up into something unmanageable.
Remember- the key to Stress Relief is to take action at the onset of stress. Please try not to let stress build up and take a 15 minutes break to quickly de-stress and unwind. A relaxed mind is more productive than a cluttered one!
Start with finding a suitable area away from the peering eyes. It can be a corner of a busy supermarket or at the end of a busy railway platform, your bedroom, under a shower or in a car park.
1. SLOW AND GENTLE DEEP BREATHING– Belly breathing is the key to a healthy body. Inhale fully to a count of 3 seconds, hold your breath for 2 seconds and then exhale to a count of 7 seconds. Continue to do this for 1-2 minutes. If disturbing thoughts cloud your mind, gently give them an acknowledgement without trying hard to get rid of them and then continue breathing.
Max duration– 2 minutes
2. AWARENESS STRETCH– Bring your awareness to the various parts of your body starting from your head to your toes. Relax every part by noticing any tension and then gently releasing them by bringing the body part to its natural position. For example- a tensed shoulder can look/feel crooked- gently bring them to their natural state. Breathe in and observe the various body parts, try to move them playfully and bring them back to their original state. Continue to do this for 2-3 minutes until you reach the toe area of your body.
Max duration– 3 minutes
3. GOLDEN QUESTION- During the day our minds can accumulate a lot of thoughts. Most of them could be stressful and less pleasant. Take a 5 minutes break and go out in fresh area/ quite corner. Take 3 deep belly breaths and ask yourself the golden question- What is that 1 most important thing that is taking away most of my energy? Usually we will have more than 1 issue but try to prioritize the problems into Severe, Mild and Low. The one which is Severe is the answer to your question. For example- The thought that you are running late for an exam is often the most severe stressful issue at THAT moment than being unprepared for the exam. Most of the time your mind will calm down even before you find the solution to the problem.
“Identification of the problem itself is the battle half won”
Max duration- 5 minutes
4. ABSTRACT TICKLE- Life becomes stressful the moment you start taking it too seriously. Be playful, laugh more and worry less. Visualize yourself to be tickled under your arms or on your toes. Feel the tickle sensation. It will immediately bring a smile on your face if not a belly laugh. Do this for 2 minutes. Of course not while you are in traffic or driving.
Max Duration- 2 minutes
A common cause of stress is having too much to do and too little time in which to do it. And yet in this situation, many people will still agree to take on additional responsibility. Learning to say “No” to additional or unimportant requests will help to reduce your level of stress, and may also help you develop more self-confidence. The above 4 stress busters are simple, effective and takes less than 15 minutes. You can choose to the one that best suits you. Your instant “calmer self” will definitely surprise you.
Total time for the whole exercise– Less than 15 minutes
Originally published on Divine Yoga Shop