Stress Management – What can you do?

stress_management1Stress can be devastating to your health.  No doubt about it.  What are some practical ways to cope with stress and manage it effectively?  Below is a technique developed by Dr. Herbert Benson, MD from the Mind Body Institute at Harvard Medical School.  It was shown in studies to effectively lower the nervous system’s “Flight and Fight” response and reduce stress hormones in the blood.

Steps to Elicit the Relaxation Response

The following is the technique reprinted with permission from Dr. Herbert Benson’s book
The Relaxation Response pages 162-163

1.
Sit quietly in a comfortable position.

2.
Close your eyes.

3.
Deeply relax all your muscles,
beginning at your feet and progressing up to your face.
Keep them relaxed.

4.
Breathe through your nose.
Become aware of your breathing.
As you breathe out, say the word, “one”*,
silently to yourself. For example,
breathe in … out, “one “,- in .. out, “one”, etc.
Breathe easily and naturally.

5.
Continue for 10 to 20 minutes.
You may open your eyes to check the time, but do not use an alarm.
When you finish, sit quietly for several minutes,
at first with your eyes closed and later with your eyes opened.
Do not stand up for a few minutes.

6.
Do not worry about whether you are successful
in achieving a deep level of relaxation.
Maintain a passive attitude and permit relaxation to occur at its own pace.
When distracting thoughts occur,
try to ignore them by not dwelling upon them
and return to repeating “one.”

With practice, the response should come with little effort.
Practice the technique once or twice daily,
but not within two hours after any meal,
since the digestive processes seem to interfere with
the elicitation of the Relaxation Response.

* or any soothing, mellifluous sound, preferably with no meaning.
or association, to avoid stimulation of unnecessary thoughts.

There is a lot more to cover in managing stress and restoring health.  The good news is, we cover this in much greater detail in our  Wellness Solution Program.  To learn more about The Wellness Solution click on the link above.

P.S.

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Dr Daniel Lonquist and Dr Greg Haitz
Wellness Solutions, LLC

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