Posted tagged ‘stress relief’

5 Easy Ways to Tune into your Body

August 26, 2009

Hi all,

As I mentioned in previous posts, Tuning into your body is a great way to become aware of the present moment.  However many people do not know what it takes to really tune in.

In my last post, I identified the breath as a great way to connect with your body. Along with the breath I would like to offer you 5 Easy ways to tune in

The Breath – Taking 3 deep intentional breaths deep into your base of your lungs.

1) Notice sensations running through your hands and feet.  Feel the warmth, the tingling that may be present

2) Focus your attention to the back of your throat.  Do you feel warmth, tightness, openness, emotion that is just sitting there.

3) Focus your attention to your solar plexus – half way between the belly button and the rib cage.  Do you feel warmth, butterflies, openness, tightness

4) Focus your attention to your face – Do you feel tension in your jaw, do you squint your eyes, relax your tongue in your mouth.

5) Focus your attention to your neck and shoulders.  Release any tension you may feel, drop your shoulders, do shoulder rolls.  What sensations do you notice there?

Take another deep breath in to through your nose for the count of 5 and out through your mouth for the count of 5.

These 5 easy steps help you to tune into your body in a sequential manner. Take the opportunity throughout your day to check in with yourself.  What are you feeling in this moment?  Taking this time will help you become more aware of what is happening for your body!

Blog with you later



Permission to be Negative – Expanded

July 7, 2009

I have had a few people email me about my posts “Giving Yourself Permission to be Negative” and “Shining Light on the Shadow”. They raised the question about when is enough enough so that the “Law of Attraction” does not become attracted to the negative energy  you are releasing.  To make it clear – giving yourself permission to be negative is a way of releasing the energy that gets built up in your system when you do not express it. It is like trying to keep a cork on a bottle of carbonated soda you have just shaken.  Allowing the pressure to escape will result in a calm presence in the bottle afterwards.  If however, you do not release the pressure, it can take a long time for the pressure to release.

What are your beliefs about being negative? You may think that if you say something negative that you will attract negativity in your life.  Yet, how much negativity do we carry around that is unexpressed because we fear saying it out loud.  Where does this unspent negative energy go?  When do we give ourselves the opportunity to rid our bodies of this negative energy?  I do not profess to know the answers to these questions for you.  Only you can decide what is right for you. My goal is to help you develop some awareness of where the negativity goes.

Remember – There are safe and appropriate ways to release your negativity that do not impact others. You can do this in the privacy of your own home, your car, with a trusted friend who recognizes that you are just venting steam or out on a walk in nature where you can be nurtured by the beauty around you.  What I have found is after I give myself full permission to feel all that I need to feel – “warts and all”, I find myself at one with the world and feel like I can do anything. The negativity has disappeared and I reclaim my perspective that all is right with the world.  From that place I can move mountains.

I welcome your thoughts and feedback on giving yourself permission to be negative.  What do you notice works for you? Does the thought of letting yourself be negative scare you?  Is this a new concept for you or is this something that you allow yourself to do regularly.

Let me know, I would love to hear from you.


Telling yourself the truth

June 11, 2009

I just had the opportunity to read a great blog about limiting beliefs by Kim de Young of Metromom.  It is worthwhile reading for any of you who know that your subconscious beliefs get in the way of moving forward.  She has a great way of sharing her insights.

Some of the most amazing growth periods in my life and in my business have been because I have taken the time to look at my life, tell myself the truth about how I feel and take some action steps to help me get to where I want to go.  That having been said, sometimes I have to admit, I just don’t want to take a look. Even more than that, I may take a look but I don’t want to tell myself the truth about how I feel. Deep down however, when I do not tell myself the truth, I know that I am kidding myself and eventually it will all catch up with me.

Today, I want you to ask yourself just one question – In this moment – how do I feel about my life. You may be happy, content, peaceful, excited and energized. I hope so.

However, for many people this is not how they feel about their life.  Many people are sad, angry, scared, frustrated or any other negative emotion.  If this is the case

Take an intentional breath

Name that feeling – it helps to name the emotion – angry, sad, scared

Ask yourself – what can I do about this RIGHT NOW

You may want to go outside catch a breath of fresh air, walk around the block,

You may need to Blow off some steam

Tell yourself the truth

Take action

Take another deep intentional breath

Let me know how you do and if you have any questions.

Blog with you later


7 Steps to Help You SLOW DOWN

May 30, 2009

I remember several years ago I had a flurry of speeding tickets. I owned a children’s clothing store which was starting to falter, I had three kids doing various activities, we were building a house, and I never seemed to have enough time to do anything.  I always seemed to be rushing from hither to yon and within a three week period of time, I received two speeding tickets and a warning. I failed to mention that at this time, I was also doing a lot of soul searching on how I was living my life as I WAS NOT HAPPY.

When I was stopped by the cop on the third occasion, I looked at him and pleaded with him to not give me a ticket and apologized profusely.  I GOT IT THEN – I needed to SLOW DOWN – not just my driving but my life as well.

Today when I notice that racing feeling starting inside of me and I take the following steps:

1 – I take a deep intentional breath

2- Ask myself –What is my goal for the next hour or two? I define a segment of time and write down my goal.

3 – What do I need to do to accomplish my goal – I spend time outlining steps, prioritizing these steps, writing them down (this makes them tangible and easier to remember).  This process may take 2-5 minutes and saves valuable energy.

4 -Ask myself – HOW DO I WANT TO FEEL WHILE I AM WORKING ON THIS GOAL – I set the intention that I am present, focused, clear and efficient.  This is easier to do when I set the intention for this period of time i.e. one hour rather than a whole day.

5-  I start working on the steps, breathing and focusing on what I have set out to accomplish – staying in the moment

6 – About 5 minutes before the end of the segment of time (at 55 minutes – set a timer) I decide whether to carry on for longer or to stop working on the goal and write out what I need to do next time I work on it.

7- I take a deep intentional breath and acknowledge myself for the focused, clear, efficient work that I did the previous hour.

If I found that I was not as focused as I wished, I tell myself the truth and try to be gentle on myself and celebrate what I did accomplish. 

In reality I do this about 80% of the time and it works marvelously.  I try to be more intentional with my time because the rewards are endless.

If we don’t acknowledge what we have done we will never see how far we have come.

Blog with you soon.


Giving Myself Permission to do NOTHING

May 24, 2009

Life has been busy for me lately with the re:design and content development of my web site, writing and recording podcasts, writing blog posts as well as seeing clients and all of the administration that comes with owning my own business.  I just took training on Twitter and Linked-in and feel a bit overwhelmed with all I have to do.  I absolutely love it all and feel on track with everything but the volume of work at times seems a bit over the top.

On Tuesday, I felt scattered, had low energy and was really foggy in my thinking.    As I looked at the things I wanted to get done on my “to do”  list, phone calls, emails, banking, content development, editing podcasts etc. as well as writing my speech for Toastmasters, I felt at a loss for where to begin. I knew that I needed to do something otherwise my day would be struggle.

I got quiet for a moment, took an intentional breath and asked myself  “what can I do RIGHT NOW” to get myself on track.  The message I got from my “self” was loud and clear “do nothing”. I thought, “how can I take a break when I have so much to do”. Yet, I know from experience that I need to give myself permission to listen to my body and myself when I get these messages. So, I gave myself permission to “do nothing” i.e. not write my speech, not look on twitter or write a blog,  not do the banking and not respond to emails.  NOTHING!!!

I poured myself a cup of tea, put my feet up and turned on some relaxing music.  I did some intentional breathing and closed my eyes for a few moments.  What happened next for me is a testament to living in the moment.  I followed my energy and picked up a piece of paper to make some notes about what I wanted to do.  Before I knew it, I had  composed my speech for Toastmasters (outline and the content ready to be edited and polished).  From there, I got up, went to see a colleague next door and came across another colleague whom I had been meaning to contact.  We were able to reconnect and set up an appointment to meet. After that, I responded to emails and got MOST of the things completed on my list. It was all done easily and effortlessly.

If I would have pushed through I know it would have taken me 10 times longer.  This way, I took care of myself and got reenergized and before I knew it everything was done.

So next time you feel overwhelmed or are starting to feel like stress is beginning to build, ask yourself “What can I do RIGHT NOW” to feel better.  Then be quiet and listen to the messages and ACT ON THEM.  If you do, I bet you will be amazed at the results you achieve.

Take care all and I will blog with you later.


Feeling good – “in the moment”

May 21, 2009

There has been a lot written about the “Law of Attraction”, “The Secret”,Power of Positive Thinking” and many others to help guide us on the road to living and thinking more positively.  These books and self improvement movements are attempting to teach us that we can manifest and achieve greatness in our lives depending on our perspective and our beliefs.  In order to have the life we want, we need to change how we think and feel in order to achieve what we want to attract in our lives.

This is a very powerful concept and one that brings great success to those who can master the principals.  The reality for many people however, is that this is easy in theory but difficult in practice.  How can we start to change our perspectives and our beliefs in order to live “the life we want”?  My answer to you is “moment by moment”.

I described in a previous post that our body responds to the stories we tell whether real or imagined. If we recount the story of how someone hurt us, angered us, jilted us etc. and we tell this story repeatedly to ourselves or anyone who will listen, we are stimulating the secretion of stress hormones in our body – just by reliving the story. Unfortunately in society today, it is all too common for people to dwell on negativity and sad stories.  Look at what happens every time there is a story of human tragedy; the media overloads us with stories, images etc. to help us relive the tragedy several times each day/week and even months.

So what can you do shift to a more positive life? Remember I told you that our body responds to the stories we tell whether real or imagined.  So if you can reconnect with a positive story, something that makes you smile, something that makes you feel good, then the opposite can happen.  The feel good hormones – serotonin, endorphins, and DHEA are released when we tell a story that makes us feel good.

So what makes you smile? Imagine puppy dogs running with feet that are too big for their bodies, a child learning to walk and how they giggle when they take their first step, the look on the mother’s face as she is encouraging them with love and excitement.  One of my feel good moments is hugging my kids and the emotions that wash over my system when I think of them.  For some people it is a memorable hike, a family gathering, an amazing ski adventure and for others it may be a jump into a lake on a hot summers day.

What are your feel good moments?

Take a few minutes and write them down.

Come up with as many as you can so you have a variety to call on when you want to feel good in the moment

Take one of those moments

Reconnect with the feelings of the time

Imagine your body reliving that moment

Notice how your body feels

Be with this feeling as long as you can

Try to make a habit every morning, lunch, dinner and bedtime to connect with positive emotions – it will help you “feel good – in the moment”

Take care all,


7 Unrecognized Signs of Early Stress

May 20, 2009

People think of stress as being burnt out, crying alot, feeling overwhelmed and unable to cope.   While these are definately signs of stress, they are often preceded by some earlier warning signs that people do not necessarily attribute to stress. These include:

1.  Inability to get a good nights sleep – Many of my clients report that they cannot sleep well because they are  thinking and rethinking about their day as they are trying to get to sleep. Sometimes they wake up in the middle of the night and find it difficult to get back to sleep as they cannot seem to shut off their mind.

2.  Aches and Pains – Research shows that even one stressful thought can lead to changes all the way down to the DNA of our cells.  The aches and pains we experience are like the body is crying out for some relief from the stress that it is facing and it needs to get loud for us to start paying attention to it.

3.  Low Energy – Not only does stress affect the DNA of our cells, it also affects the energy generation of our cells. It is a major energy leak .  Dr. Woodson Merrell in his book “The Source” outlines wonderfully how stress impedes our energy. This is an excellent book to help you develop a plan to return to vibrant health.

4.  Scattered thinking – Have you ever walked into your office and thought “I need to do this today” and 2 minutes later you find yourself on the internet surfing something totally different.  You find yourself starting one project, and then moving onto something else without completing the first.  Not only is this behavior stressful as you do not get your work done, but it is often an unrecognized sign that stress is starting to accumulate.

5.  Foggy Thinking – Have you ever found yourself trying to get a project done but you cannot seem to find the words to write the report or complete the task.  You look at the work in front of you and do not know where to begin.  Once again, with adrenaline and cortisol running through your system at unhealthy amounts we get what is called “corticol inhibition” which means we are not even accessing the brain’s cerebral cortex which is responsible for decision making, problem solving and creativity.

6.  Loss of your sense of humor – Remember when you could laugh at your mistakes, when you did not take everything in your life so seriously, and when you could smile spontaneously at a good memory.  When we have stress starting to accumulate in our bodies, our perspective narrows and we start to take everything way too seriously.

7. Increased negativity – Remember when you could see the good in others, in your children, in your partner and your colleagues.  If you are finding yourself more critical and inclined to gossip or look for what is not working in a situation, this is another unrecognized sign of stress.

Many of these signs are often minimized or ignored. What usually happens when people notice they are acting this way is they get into the negative self talk of the shoulda, woulda, coulda that I spoke about it “How connected are you with you”.

One of the best ways to de-stress “in the moment” is to take 3 Intentional Breaths.  This focuses your attention on the body with the intention of calming it down.

Blog with you later