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The lead up to Christmas and the summer holidays can be a very stressful time of year. On top of the usual chaos of the festive season arriving, it’s very easy to forget how to unwind after a very busy year.
Actively taking the time to unwind is often neglected, without the understanding just how important it is to wellbeing. Relaxing helps lower muscle tension and supports digestive health. It can also support blood pressure, blood flow to your brain, and your heart rate. And it does wonders for your emotional state and general mental health.
Everybody relaxes in different ways. You may practice yoga, meditation, or mindfulness, or you may prefer to put your feet up and lose yourself in a series or book. You may like to write or cook or walk or run. Any activity that is calming to you and removes you from the daily stressors of your life is a tool you can use to relax.
If you’re looking for some alternative techniques to help you relax, these six tips might also be helpful.
1. Leave your work at work
Stop working! Work belongs at work and your personal life belongs at home. These lines get blurred especially with so many now working from home. Technological advances have made our lives better in so many ways, but mobile devices have also become constant connections to our jobs. When you leave the office (even virtually), leave your work at the door. If you can’t disconnect your emails, at least turn off the notifications!
2. Write down your worries
Treat yourself to an inexpensive, attractive notebook and write down anything that’s making you feel worried, then set it aside. Research shows that acknowledging your problems by writing them down helps you to separate yourself from them, making it easier to calm your mind while you rest.
3. Use visualisation
Visualisation can be a particularly powerful tool when you begin to feel frazzled or on edge. On a neurological level, you brain doesn’t know the difference between real, watched, or imagined scenes. Pathways are developed by your brain, that build connections supporting habitual trains of thought. Regularly visualising yourself relaxed in your favourite place, doing a relaxing activity, thinking about the sounds, the smells, and the sights, trains your brain to develop mental and emotional pathways that help you to relax.
4. Get back to nature
There’s some truth in the saying about stopping to smell the roses. Being outdoors and sitting amongst nature quietens a busy mind and is a great way to engage all your senses. Take time to focus on your breathing and listen to your surroundings and observe the sights, sounds, and smells.
Natural health supplements can also be the added support your body needs to help relax and de-stress. B Vitamins, 5HTP, magnesium and herbs like chamomile, lemon balm, withania, and passionflower are all great remedies for support when life becomes a little too busy and overwhelming.
5. Be present
Mindfulness is a therapeutic technique that focuses on the here and now. It is a mental state achieved by being aware and focused on the present moment. Focus on your thoughts and feelings, be aware of what your body is doing and calmly accept it all. It’s choosing not to relive yesterday’s crisis or worry about that big meeting tomorrow, but rather to live in the moment.
Try using these techniques to stay calm and relaxed in the lead up to Christmas, your body and mind will thank you for it!
Why is relaxation important during the lead-up to Christmas and summer holidays?
Relaxation is essential during this stressful time as it helps lower muscle tension, supports digestive health, and positively affects blood pressure, blood flow, heart rate, emotional state, and mental health.
What natural health supplements are recommended for relaxation?
Natural supplements like B Vitamins, 5HTP, magnesium, and herbs such as chamomile, lemon balm, withania, and passionflower can provide additional support for relaxation during busy times.