Helpful Hints

How to Relax

Relaxing is a key component of staying healthy, both mentally and physically. For anyone, finding time to relax can be a difficult task. When you have a chronic illness, finding subtle ways to relax throughout the day can be vital. Doctors will always stress the importance of mental health. Often it can feel attacking or intimidating. As you start to master biofeedback you’ll discover you have the power to change your perspective. Here are some great tips to help you relax throughout the day. 

  1. Meditation

I will always stress the importance of meditation. Being able to calm your mind, even if only for a few minutes is a magical experience. Guided meditation is a great way to ease into a practice that can be difficult. Start with a few minutes and adding time as you feel appropriate. There are several amazing apps, such as Insight Timer, Calm, Shine, and more! The app store, at least for Iphones has a whole section for meditation.

  1. Take a deep breath

When we start to become distressed, in any form, our body will react automatically. For me, my automatic functions don’t work properly and tend to overreact. I’ve found that being aware of how I’m breathing can be vital to controlling emotional response. Our mind can only focus on one thing at a time. When we take a deep breath in and focus on breathing, it allows us to let go of what we are reacting to. It can be helpful in almost any situation. Once you feel you have a good handle on slowing your breathing, you can try to use it while doing activities. One example is reading a book. 

  1. Be Creative

There are lots of activities that help us release emotions without having to think about it. I usually paint, especially when I’m overwhelmed. Other activities I’ve found helpful include loop yarn or sewing. Things that don’t take a lot of effort but you can lose yourself in. It’s especially helpful if you turn on some relaxing music or even some background noise. It might be your favorite show or a Disney movie. While you create something, you can feel accomplished and relaxed.

  1. Let out your emotion

This is difficult and takes some practice. You have to find the way you can best release your emotions. I am a talker, I need to think through situations out loud. Unfortunately, for the people around me they get stuck listening to all the mumbo jumbo. Often, they don’t contribute to the end result. When I’m angry or sad, I do something more active, run or exercise. If i’m not in a physical place to do that I’ll scribble in a journal. Find something that helps you release tension. 

  1. Find a Quiet Activity

When we are full and need to let go, it’s difficult to sit down and focus. I’ve found that reading, especially before bed, helps calm my body. For you, this might be journaling or playing a relaxing game on your phone. Something that won’t excite you or stress you out. An activity that invites you to mellow out. 

  1. Build Relaxation into your Routine

When we start trying to relax, it can be challenging. When we’re not used to this feeling it can be foreign or even unsettling. Start to build relaxation into your routine. It will allow your body to get a daily dose and you will start to see little changes. Pretty soon, you’ll look forward to these moments of relaxation and treasure them. If you’re like me, you might set reminders on your phone to sit down and refocus. It’s easy to get caught up in the day and forget to pay attention to your body. 

I hope you are able to use these tips in your daily life. Relaxation can be a true gift. There is no right or wrong to relaxation. Allow yourself time to find what is right for you. If you’re struggling, don’t get frustrated, it is completely normal! Pretty soon you’ll be telling others how important it is to relax.

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