4 ways to relax in your busy world

butterfly blue

Find relaxation, peace and space in your life.

You are so busy. You are always running around. You don’t feel a sense of having ‘space’ in your life. In fact, what does having ‘space’ feel like when you are too busy to even think sometimes?

Some people choose to be busy, and some people have a myriad of obligations that they cannot control. Whatever the case may be, here are some easy ways to find that serene sense of space within your busy life. It’s about taking mini ‘time outs’ from your busy day and creating a sense of being centered and grounded.  It’s about noticing the present moment so life doesn’t just pass you by, so one day doesn’t just blend into the next.

4 easy ways to create space in your day:

  1. Just breathe. This is probably the #1 easiest and quickest way to get centered.  Simply bring your mind’s focus to your breath, to your breathing.  Even if this is for 4 breaths, this can instantly relax you. Feel your breathing, feel how your body moves when it breathes. Take slower, deeper breaths.
  2. Disconnect from technology. You know how you can be on your computer or your cell phone, and before you know it, hours have passed by. Take an intentional break from technology – turn off your cell phone and stay away from your computer, even for a partial day, or create a daily ‘black-out’ period to help you help yourself. When you first do this, observe if you have any uncomfortable feelings – if you do, simply observe that and seek a feeling of being released from your attachment to technology.
  3. Stop over-thinking.  Our ‘monkey mind’ never stops. That’s the human way, and thank goodness for that! But when you observe your thinking, you will see how much you might be over-thinking things, which usually isn’t very functional and just increases your stress.  So catch yourself when you are over-thinking a subject, and simply change your thoughts to something else.  Saying silently to yourself “Stop” or “Change” can be very helpful.
  4. Meditate.  And yes, of course I am going to put meditation on this list.  Taking the time to meditate is a beautiful lifestyle practice. Those of you who already do it, know what I’m talking about. Those of you who have not yet tried meditation are in for a wonderful and curious ride, and I encourage you to take classes to learn meditation.

Please give some or all of these a try.  Creating more relaxation in your life will cultivate more joy in your life.




Deep breathing relaxes the mind and body

meditator breathing

Your breath gives you life

If you haven’t heard of the great benefits of deep breathing, it’s worth learning about this.

The practice of deep breathing stimulates our parasympathetic nervous system (PNS), responsible for activities that occur when our body is at rest. It functions in opposite to the sympathetic nervous system, which stimulates activities associated with the flight-or-fight response.

By voluntarily changing the rate, depth, and pattern of your breathing, you can change the messages being sent from the body’s respiratory system to the brain. In this way, breathing techniques provide a portal to the autonomic communication network through which you can, by changing your breathing patterns, send specific messages to the brain using the language of the body, a language the brain understands and to which it responds. Messages from the respiratory system have rapid, powerful effects on major brain centers involved in thought, emotion, and behavior.

In this Huffington Post article Get a Hold of Yourself: 3 Kinds of Breathing, it teaches 3 kinds of deep breathing techniques.

  1. Coherent breathing – breathing slowly at a rate of five breaths per minute.  Simply count silently to yourself from one to five while inhaling, and the same count while exhaling. Changing the rate of your breath in this way maximizes the heart rate variability (HRV) and causes a shift in our nervous system.
  2. Resistance breathing – creating a resistance in the flow of air by pursing the lips, placing the tip of the tongue against the inside of the upper teeth, hissing through the clenched teeth, tightening the throat muscles, partly closing the glottis, narrowing the space between the vocal cords or using an external object such as breathing through a straw.
  3. Breath Moving – using your imagination to move your breath through your body.

There are so many types of breathing techniques, and for different purposes.  I do the coherent breathing because it simply feels good, it immediately relaxes me, and is easy to fit into my day.

Paying attention to your breath is a wonderful way to practice mindfulness as well.

In many traditions, the word ‘breath’ means the same a ‘spirit’.

Most of us hardly breathe at all. We hold our tension in the body and breathe shallowly.  Breathe!

Breathe, stay present, and enjoy life,