Monday, January 12, 2009

Practicalities


I've had people ask me for tips to reduce their stress. They want advice that will give them more time, keep their homes tidy or keep on top of their To Do lists.

I could write out a very lengthy list of things that you already know and may or may not be doing. Get regular exercise, make a grocery list, plan a budget, go to bed earlier...

This begs the question as to why people struggle with what would seem like the obvious. The answer often lies behind the scenes or more appropriately, within your body.

The constant speeding up and slowing down of your heart is called Heart Rate Variability. (When you take your own pulse, and it reads 64 beats per minute, you are getting the average heart rate; it is not reflective of the beat to beat changes that occur.)

What doctors are now concerned with is how your heart is speeding up and slowing down. Is it smooth or jerky? When it is measured, it will produce a wave. The smoother the wave the better it is for your emotional, mental and physical health. When you feel better, you start to do better. You begin to develop practices that are resourceful for you, and as a result, for others.

Think back to a time when you felt well. Did you engage with others more frequently? Were you more charitable in how you were with yourself and others? Was life a joy?
Stress impacts all of this and more.

End your struggle with practicalities and learn some techniques to live a better life. Change is a heartbeat away.

And, if you still want a To Do list:
1. Learn how stress impacts your emotional, mental and physical health. You start from where you are.
2. Develop awareness of when you are engaging in non-resourceful behaviours (including not accomplishing things on your own To Do list.)
3. Application. Here's where you start to apply and practise your newly-learned techniques that include balancing the two branches of your autonomic nervous system.
4. New habits take time to develop. Many people get frustrated and give up too soon. Be patient and kind to yourself.
5. Positive emotions are heart friendly and when you learn how to activate them more frequently you become more resilient.

Photo: Saporob

2 comments:

  1. Well, here's the first stress I have finally relieved: you are now in my blog roll!

    I need to bop over here each day and get a cup of peace. Ahhhh...

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks, Conrad.

    I think you are quite proficient at "spelling" "r-e-l-i-e-f" in a way that works for you...by following your own heart!

    ReplyDelete

Welcome! I know your life is busy. That's why I appreciate your stopping by to comment.