In a stressful world, it is nice to have some ways to relax and slow down. By learning how to relax, you will get more enjoyment and happiness. Here are 5 ways to find a little bit of serenity in your life.
1. Breathe easy: Relaxation begins with the breath. What happens when we tend to get overstressed is we hold our breath and we don’t realize we’re doing it. Most people are chest breathers, meaning they only breathe down to the level of the center of the sternum (around heart level). Breath should be going deep into the lungs. People who are depressed or feel a lack of whole-heartedness in their life should focus on their inhale, while those who are stressed because they are too busy should focus on their exhale.
2. Sweat it out: Exercise is typically touted as a great way to relax. Activities that focus on developing resiliency or agility are the best at helping people unwind.
3. Drink not eat: More often than not, people eat when they’re stressed, when really they should be drinking more fluids. What the water and hydration does for your body is make the cells of your body able to absorb nutrients better. Having enough water helps your brain chemistry and it helps your hormones.”
4. Drop the tongue: Gritting or clenching teeth is a common physiological response to stress. Focusing on relaxing the jaw may help. It is most helpful to instead concentrate on dropping the tongue to the bottom of the mouth. If you’re stressed the tongue is on the top of your mouth. It may seem a bit silly but the tongue drops naturally when smiling and releases happy endorphins into the body.
5. Smile more: smiling counteracts the effects of cortisol (the main stress hormone in the body) by signaling the release of other hormones like serotonin, noradrenaline and oxytocin. Smile more and you’ll get more happy hormones.