The Motley News

Essence Says: RELAX!

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I like getting my Monthy Essence Magazine on and I wanted to share with you readers a nice little piece they did on keeping calm in the April ’12 issue. They listed tips on ways to relax and balance out your spirit. All of these things seem pretty common-sensical but so is information like: Take a multi-vitamin. We still forget to do those things too. Most of them I manage to do, some of them I have to work on more. Thanks for the reminder Essence!

Sing out, Sister: Singing can boost your mood and immune system? I wonder if the Germans that conducted this study, interviewed my neighbors’ mood after I’ve taken a shower. Possibly not. No worries, singing makes me happy. The louder, most exaggerated, Cher impersonation never hurt nobody.

Tune in to your Zen: Mindful meditation. I have to admit that I’m not really good at consciously doing this. If I sit and tell myself to meditate, I start fiddling with things. I’m going to try to work on this. Perhaps music is the key. Enya?

Wear a Happy Face: Smiling “may result in an increase in mood-boosting dopamine levels.” I’m a natural smiler. Whenever I’m with Noah, there’s not a lot to frown at. Plus, I love a good laugh. Just this morning, we both woke up to a little NBC Thursday Night Comedy on Tina Fey and her 30-something feminist quirkiness always gets me in a good mood.

Get in the Game: Casual video game playing can relax you and make you concentrate. Which is something I can get on board with. Since Noah bought us the Nintendo Wii, I taken advantage of the Just Dance games. I’m definitely concentrating on actions dictated to me on the screen and getting some positive feedback in the process, which according to the article, “may trigger the body’s relaxation response.” When Noah wants to wind down after a long day, he likes to play Jeopardy before bedtime. He says he’s challenged by the trivia and relaxed.

Hug it out: I didn’t really grow up in a hugging kind of family. I had to later learn it from friends and my husband. It could be a cultural things too. I noticed while living on the East coast and the in the South, people are slightly “huggier” than those in the Midwest. The blood pressure and heart rate of nearly 100 couples was measured before and after requiring them to undergo a stressful event. Hugging helped the couples that held hands and had a quick hug beforehand.

Rock away stress: “Senior citizen who rock for 80 minutes a day experience fewer symptoms of anxiety.” This is something I would never think of doing but it makes since. Babies like it; people with anxiety disorders, like OCD, find solace in it. If I think about it, I have pleasant experiences on porch swings and rocking chairs. Something to this?

Take a hike: Walking can work miracles for the body. It’s low impact exercise that takes you places. There’s no surprise that it has a healthy effect on the mind. According to Dr. Tiffany Sanders “The change of scenery combined with the increased heart rade from movement will relax your body and ease your mind.” Noah and I just went to the zoo earlier this week and walked around the whole place looking at animals. I felt so at peace with our hiking and exploring.

Unplug: This is one that I really need help with. Shutting down the computer and the television. I only do it to read, never to “recharge, refocus and re-energize” myself, as the article states. Watching TV and perusing the internet is my down time, I’m ashamed to admit. There was a time when human being didn’t come with a USB port. Great books were thought up without the invention of the iPod. Great philosophy was born of sitting alone with one’s thoughts. I would like to get back to that because I used to be a poet at one time in my life. Like, a year ago. For some reason, I’ve amped up my usage of electronic devise.

Please consider these tips when you’re feeling a little fried from your work week or after your next anxiety producing experience.

Author: charishreid

Writer and Educator.

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