Stressed? We are constantly dealing with the business and responsibility of life as it is today. Driving, cell phones and work, not to mention juggling kids, keeping a home and the news, can all leave us completely stressed out!
The way the nervous system works, we have the fight or flight mode (sympathetic nervous system), where we are on alert and ready for task or survival. The flight response is triggered by a perception of a threat or by a thought. The parasympathetic nervous system or resting/digesting mode, is when we are calm and assimilating the nutrients from our food.
But this does not happen just because we are eating. In fact, we may be eating on the move. If we are not getting adequate nourishment from our food – yet we are eating – it could be because we are not in digestion mode. This can cause all kinds of problems in our systems.
Watching a suspenseful action movie while eating will not allow the system to calm down and digest properly. Because the food is not completely digested and we are rushing around eating a salad in the car or grabbing a latte on the run, the organs get taxed. The kidneys cannot do the proper filtration job, the adrenals get stressed because they are being overused to produce adrenaline to keep combating stress. We can develop headaches, muscle tension, fatigue, anxiety, agitation, IBS, adrenal fatigue and many more, worse conditions.
The more time we spend in the sympathetic mode, the more we get used to it. It is then harder to switch to resting mode where our bodies need to spend time!
Yoga and meditation can help us combat the effects of our hectic lifestyles. Restorative yoga can put us right at ease. We need breath practices that we can learn to do anytime to help us from jumping into flight mode. Meditation can help us to spend more time in the calm/resting mode during waking hours and train our systems to stay calm.
Sometimes we can’t even get a good night sleep because we are fighting our battles in our dreams. That is because the mind is still thinking those un-restful thoughts.
But yoga, meditation and breath practice can help us get a better night’s rest. I promise! Try our Restorative class on Sundays at 5:00 or a Gentle class first thing in the morning. Many of your little ailments might just fade away as you get used to leading a calmer, less stressful life.
See you in class.