Reduce stress by listening to your body

September 13, 2017

It seems like so many of us are running through life these days.  We’re busy getting from one place to another, juggling work, family and social commitments.  We don’t slow down or stop, if at all, until our heads crash on the pillow.  It’s stressful to keep up with. The good news is, finding ways to reduce stress might be simpler than you might think.

I want to encourage you to take a moment each day to listen to your body.  Pause, take a deep breath and really listen.  What is your body telling you?  Do you feel tight?  Do you feel the weight of stress on your shoulders?  Do you feel rigid or stuck?  Does it feel like you are almost holding your breath?

Sometimes a little physical movement or change is enough to release that stress in your body. What you need may be different from what someone else needs.  So, really think about what your body needs for movement and exercise.  Do you need to stretch, stand up or walk the dog?  Do you need to go to the gym or go for a bike ride?  Start with something small like a stretch and see how you feel.

Listening to your body and responding with movement, even just a simple stretch may be enough to reduce stress and change your mood for the day.

Woman doing yoga in the desert

A healthy body at Healthy Futures

I provide the movement groups here at Healthy Futures. I love to do different kinds of movement, bring some new stuff to the groups.

I wanted to talk to you today about listening to your body. You may have heard that phrase before. I wanted to talk about that, in particular. Listening to your body, being mindful of your body.

Too often, we’re literally running through life. We just go from one thing to the other. We don’t stop until maybe at the end of the day, sometimes not even then.

Taking a moment to pause and take a deep breath, and listen to your body. I want you to do it right now. What’s your body telling you? Is it a little tight, a little stressed out? Does it need a little stretch, a little move? Do you need to stand up? Maybe.

I want you to listen to it throughout the day and be more mindful. When we listen to our body, it’s more about tuning in to what’s going on. Are there emotions present?

Are there stressors in our life that are creating different connections and different messages that our body’s trying to tell us? We’re not listening very well.

Sometimes, it’s about I need to actually physically move and get my body going. Sometimes, it’s about I need to change something. There’s a rigidity in our behaviors and in our movement sometimes.

If you notice, the more stressful times in life, we are holding still. We’re holding our breath literally. We’re maybe stuck. There’s that rigidity. Sometimes, just moving physically can help move that forward, too, emotionally.

I want you to think about that mind‑body connection of physical movement. I don’t mean just exercise. Thinking about your definition of exercise and movement. Is it going to the gym? Is it running with a buddy? Is it walking the dog? Is it going rock climbing? Is it something different?

Is that your movement? Do you need something different? Do you just need to do a stretch every day? That’s something I would recommend every day to help you listen to your body more. How can you listen to it if you aren’t checking in with it?

Starting at the top. Doing some head, neck, and shoulders, and then stretching, and then go moving all the way to your toes is going to allow you to tune into your body and it give an opportunity to tell you what it needs.

If I need to work more on this area, I’m going to do that. Who knows? Wow, it might change my mood. It might change my whole day. I encourage stretching just to check in with your body and allow you to listen to it more.

Then it’s going to be able to tell you what it needs. Then it’s just going to create that overall health, which is going to be amazing and feel good. Do something every day.

There’s a lot of different…Everyone’s telling you do 30 minutes. Do every day. Do something. There’s so much out there, and it’s all generalities. You need to listen to your body to know what’s right for you, because everyone’s different.

Start with some stretching. Start with tuning in and being mindful of your body. Then find out what do you want to do with it. Have some fun with it. Try something different. Listen to it. How did it like it? Awesome.

My challenge today and this week, listen to your body. Do something movement-wise and check in, and see how it goes for the day. Thank you so much. Have a wonderful day.

Jessica McCall at Healthy Futures

I wanted to talk to you today about listening to your body. You may have heard that phrase before. I wanted to talk about that, in particular. Listening to your body, being mindful of your body.

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