Resolutions for Relaxation, by deZengo
Each year many of sit down and create completely unrealistic and non-tangible goals for the coming year. We begin each year with gusto and promise our self silently that we will make it this year. The trouble with this repeating cycle is you begin to lose respect for your self and you are never able to truly achieve your goals in life. You begin to expect failure and that energy in turn draws more of the same. The good news is you have the ability to change that any moment in time - not just "New Years!"
This year consider making a few resolutions for the coming year that are attainable, you will enjoy and it additionally benefits the multi-dimensional body we exist withIN. Anything I share with you, an idea / tip / technique, it has worked for me! Until that moment it's only hearsay. Our entire journey is like that, but once you make a few little tweaks in your daily programming, the results are dramatic and long lasting. Relaxation is an art and maybe a science, but it is one that is no longer hidden behind golden palaces or only available on those who can read the "sacred scrolls."
Relaxation comes in as many beautiful variations as does humanity. So there is no "one shoe fits all" to attaining that perfect blissFULL state of BE(ing) and the methods can also change with the needs of the individual. The OMTimes Health & Wellness Team voted and here are the top ideas.
:: Resolutions for Relaxation ::
1. Relax the Body
In order to relax the body, you must first work the body. Start with just moving! Get off your computer, out of the car and do something forces your body to use the muscles, bones, joints, etc... This is a "use it or lose it" situation with the physical form, same as with our spiritual & mental sides. Walk, hop, jump, skip, slide, roller blade, trampoline, dance, YOGA ...
Exercise and Stress
Regular exercise reduces the amount of stress hormones in the body, resulting in a slower heart rate, relaxed blood vessels, and lower blood pressure. Increased relaxation after exercise shows on your face with reduced muscle tension.
Exercise Helps the Mind & Body Regulate
Research shows that regular exercise reduces symptoms of moderate depression and enhances psychological fitness. Exercise can even produce changes in certain chemical levels in the body, which can have an effect on the psychological state.
Endorphins are hormones in the brain associated with a happy, positive feeling. A low level of endorphins is associated with depression. During exercise, plasma levels of this substance increase. This may help to ease symptoms of depression. A recent National Health and Nutrition survey found that physically active people were half as likely to be depressed. Exercise also boosts the neurotransmitter serotonin in the brain. Neurotransmitters are chemicals that send specific messages from one brain cell to another. Though only a small percentage of all serotonin is located in the brain, this neurotransmitter is thought to play a key role in keeping your mood calm (1)
2. Relax the Mind
Read a book, write in a journal, learn something new, put a puzzle together. Use your mind and push it to it's furthest limits. Allow yourself to dream, to see potential thereby being conscious of some of what is going on around us at every moment. Once you have found the techniques that keep your brain stimulated and activated. Then the reward through the non-thinking process of meditation.
Monique Le Poncin, founder of the French National Institute for Research on the Prevention of Cerebral Aging, has written a fascinating book called Brain Fitness. By identifying the various mental abilities in the human repertoire--perception, long- and short-term memory, and visuospatial, structuralization, logic, and verbal abilities-- Le Poncin has "prescribed" an exercise regimen designed to strengthen those areas that tend to become weak over the lifespan. She advocates a technique of cerebral activation, which she calls "brain fitness." (2)
Brain Relaxation :: Quiet Time : Mediation : Pray
How you do this will be entirely up to you, but I recommend at some point adding : guided meditation or prayers, listening to SACREDsounds and Binural Beats.
Many of the benfits are the same or closely related to those with prayer.
Research reveals that people who pray have lower depression and suicide rates. Prayer even appears to lower bloodpressure. In a study funded by the National Institutes of Health, investigators found that individuals who attended religious services at least once a week and prayed at least once a day or studied the Bible frequently were 40% less likely to have high blood pressure than those who did so infrequently. In other research, elderly women recovering from hip-fracture surgery who had strong religious beliefs and practices were able to walk greater distances when they left the hospital than those who were not as religious.
3. Relax the Spirit
As much as I love (did I mention LOVE) this technological age that allows us to communicate, learn, share, explore the universe with one another! Pretty downdog amazing in my opinion. The internet has almost become one-STOP-shopping. However, as much of a party as we all have here joined in communion of service to one another, we must get out and enjoy fresh air. Our bodies need it. Breath deeply if you are in an area with low pollution and many trees! If you walk in nature, you can get a two for one, but if your exercise regime is indoors - you still need to get back into nature and figure out how amazing she is.
Get Back to NATURE(al)
It's got to be done and there is no way to recreate what you experience in relaxation rewards for just being in NATURE. Depending on your environment and situation this might include a walk, gardening, hiking, biking, swimming to name a few.
More than 100 research studies have shown that outdoor recreation reduces stress. In a study of individuals exposed to stressful videos of accidents, those who watched a subsequent nature video experienced faster recovery than those who watched a video with other content.1 Another study established that a view of nature, even through a window, speeds recovery from surgery, improves work performance, and increases job satisfaction.2 By observing the ever-changing environments in nature, individuals cultivate a positive attitude, renewed attention, mindfulness, and sensory awareness. In the words of renowned naturalist and essayist John Burroughs (1837-1921), "I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order."
Now doesn't that sound easy? Anyone who wants to make some changes in their life, why not start at the bottom and work your way up. The building blocks to a happy & healthy life begin with "relaxation!" We hope you can keep this resolution, because it is the gift that keeps on giving!
Happy New Year!
~deZengo and the OM Times Health & Wellness Team