Saturday, 18 July 2015

Learning to relax.

Well, I haven't written many blogposts lately. Reason is that I need some time for myself. I've been very stressed out and need to learn how to relax. How? Here's some advice and a few products that I enjoy to help me.

My physiotherapist taught me a breathing exercise for relaxation. Breathe with the diaphragm, not the chest. Then practice breathing very slowly, in through the nose and out through the mouth. Start with three seconds of inhaling and four seconds of exhaling. Work your way up to 4 seconds of inhaling and 8 seconds of exhaling. You can use 3-5; 4-6; 4-7; 4-8 as steps in between. In the long run it improves breathing even when you're not paying any attention to it, that is if you practice very often!

Some days I feel kind of restless and agitated. Going for a run can work wonders in such cases! If your head's still filled with worries during the run, just notice this and try to focus on the motion and your surroundings. This is where barefoot running is great too: you need to be aware of your surroundings, unless you prefer stepping on pebbles of course.

I started going to a yoga class. I don't know which type of yoga, but it's a very gentle and relaxing one. It's so relaxing that two people have fallen asleep in the class! Life just seems better when I leave there compared to when I arrive. One couldn't ask for more than that!

Cut back on the caffeine
I've written about this before, if you're already stressed, don't consume too much caffeine! I switched to tea when I needed to. Any tea has less caffeine than coffee does, but black tea has more caffeine than other teas do. So green tea, white tea and herbal infusions are good options. There are also herbal blends the are supposed to aid in relaxation. I got these two Clipper teas and I especially like the sleep easy one. It's tastes orange-y.

Relaxing YouTube videos
When I'm having trouble falling asleep, I listen to relaxing YouTube videos. Look for something that works for you of course, but there's so many videos I'm sure you'll find a video you like! There are nature sound, ocean sounds, ASMR videos, yoga videos, guided meditation videos, etc.

Wind down before bed
Take some time to wind down before bed! you can take a bath or get comfy in your PJ's, have a cup of tea. It's best not to watch any screens: the blue-toned light keeps people awake! You can read a book or magazine, or do some yoga. I also like to light a candle and use a pillow mist sometimes. If you make bedtime a ritual, you'll teach your body it's time to go to bed.

What's your advice for relaxation?