Stress seems to be in the air at the moment. You can almost physically feel it as you walk down the street and see people rushing around trying to rush the kids to school, get themselves to work on time, change gear after the summer holidays and deal with the temperamental British weather.
I’ve had a pretty crazy week myself, working more than 11 hours a day, juggling working at the office, preparing for client sessions, pulling presentations together and confronting all the admin that piles up without my noticing. Oh, and not to forget coordinating a website project for the British Autogenic Society, buying a present for my best friend’s birthday and trying to fit in eating and sleeping somehow!
I know I’m not alone – you might be reading this and think, ‘lightweight, that’s nothing compared to my 14 hour day, five children to clothe and feed, etc’ – but rather than turn this into a game of stress one-upmanship I want to think a bit about how we can deal with this. Because the reality is that the stresses of life aren’t going to disappear. Short of winning the lottery we’re still going to have to make a living, and the added pressures of family and social life, sometimes combined with physical illness, can just seem like too much.
In my practice I frequently hear people say things like, ‘I can’t relax, I don’t know how to do it’, or, ‘I feel stressed to the point of feeling sick but don’t know how to handle it’. So much of our lives seems to pass by in a blur, running from appointment to appointment, chasing our tails. And we’re reacting like crazy to external events over which we have no control. If you live or work in London you were probably affected by the recent tube strike. How did you deal with it? Did you feel panicky or stressed out? Did you give yourself some time at the end of the day to slow down? Maybe you collapsed on the sofa in front of the TV, but even then your body may be resting but your mind is still spinning ninety to the dozen.
In this blog I’ll be writing about ways of relaxing, how anxiety affects our bodies and how to treat various stress-related physical conditions. I’m also passionate about body symbolism, which is all about how psychological problems can manifest themselves in our physical bodies, and will be sharing my thoughts on this over the coming weeks. In the meantime, here are my top five relaxation tips that are easy to follow and will make a real difference to your life.
I’d really love to hear what you think so please leave a comment or get in touch about other topics you’re interested in. Here’s my website where you can find loads more practical info about stress and relaxation. I hope you find it helpful.