What do you do to relax and unwind?
My friend, Toni Cay Snyder, has a great step-by-step exercise to balance stress and rejuvenate your mind, body and spirit.
Find a suitable area where you can close your eyes and tune out the world for the next 10 minutes:
(1 minute) Sit or stand with your back straight and both feet on the floor. Close your eyes and take three deep breaths, then focus on your regular breathing. If your thoughts start to take over, gently return your focus to your breath.
TENSE AND RELAX
(4 minutes) Make a fist with your hands and tense the muscles in your arms. Hold the tension for a few seconds, then relax the muscles. Now tense and fully relax each muscle group from your chest to your calves.
(3 minutes) Think about a place where you felt content and relaxed, like a warm beach, a cozy fire or a leisurely mountain hike. Try to place yourself in this lovely scene and continue to focus on your breathing.
(1 Minute) Picture a stream of light entering the crown of your head and traveling all the way down your body and into the ground, taking with it every bit of stress and washing it away. Visualize your stress letting go and leaving you calm and refreshed.
(1 Minute) Keep your eyes closed and take a deep, cleansing breath. Move your fingers and toes and stretch your body like a cat just waking up from a nice nap. Open your eyes and notice how much better you feel.
Try this simple 10-minute plan to balance stress and shrug off its negative effects. It will give your body, mind and spirit a chance to relax and chill out after a stressful situation and before the next one builds up. Take ten, everyone!