The benefit of relaxation
From the LifeMinute.TV Team
August 12, 2022
Regular, daily activities can make you tense, taking a toll on your physical and mental health. In honor of National Relaxation Day on August 15th, take time out and learn to relax with these tips.
Breathing exercises are a simple tool to help you relax. Box breathing is a type of deep breathing exercise, which can be especially useful to engage in, during, and, or after a stressful experience. The exercise includes four simple steps:
Step 1: Breath in through your nose as you slowly count 4 seconds.
Step 2: Hold your breath for a count of 4 seconds.
Step 3: Breath out for a count of 4 seconds.
Step 4: Hold your breath again for another count of 4 seconds. Repeat as necessary.
Write it Down
Getting things off your mind by writing them down can help you understand them better and relax. Take a few minutes each day to write down short notes about how you are feeling or how your day is going. Journaling may also help declutter your mind and prioritize challenges. Eliminating unnecessary or anxious thoughts can reduce stress, improve memory, and free up mental space.
Step it Up
Regular participation in aerobic exercise can decrease overall levels of tension, elevate and stabilize mood, improve sleep, and improve self-esteem. Even five minutes of aerobic exercise can stimulate anti-anxiety effects. If you are not currently active, start with gentle activities such as walking, biking, and stretching. Choose an activity you enjoy. It can improve your chances of sticking to it in the long term.
Talk To Your Girlfriend
Researchers at the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign explored how female friendships affect overall well-being. They found that women who spent time speaking with their female friends had lower stress (cortisol) levels. Across female lifespans, communicating with female friends lowered cortisol levels more than those working with unfamiliar partners. You go, girls.
Connect with Nature
Being in nature can help clear your head, bringing you into the present moment. But you do not necessarily have to be in the great outdoors to get its benefits. One study found that viewing images of greenery can provide soothing and stress-reducing effects. The research found that watching images of greenery can lower stress levels, thanks to the activation of the parasympathetic nervous system, which controls our body's ability to relax and rest. Other research shows that listening to nature sounds can have a similar effect by reducing the body's sympathetic response (fight-or-flight feeling) and increasing the body's natural resting state.
Play That Tune
Listening to music can reduce physical and emotional stress. Plus, it can release endorphins and improve well-being. In a survey completed by more than 5,600 people from 11 countries, listening to music provided an important role in helping them cope during the COVID-19 lockdown. Music was the most effective activity for three out of five well-being goals: enjoyment, venting negative emotions, and self-connection. For diversion, music was equally good as entertainment. It was second best to create a sense of togetherness after socialization. This result was evident across cultures, ages, and genders.