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Amira McLaughlin

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By now, after learning about how you can positively affect your levels of anxiety using activities of various types, you know the power is in your hands. However, I have several more tips for you over the next several days, one of which is Yoga. There are several types of Yoga. It doesn’t matter the type you choose, as long as you enjoy it! Besides, the benefits of Yoga, overall, are many. Making yourself move and stretch has a significant effect on your brain chemistry, attitude, energy, and emotions.

This practice is especially useful in managing related anxiety symptoms. In one study, participants that practiced Hatha Yoga felt an overall improvement in their quality of life and less stress and anxiety after ten sessions. That is powerful!

Have you tried Yoga? If not, read on to see what it can do for increased calm and peace, the enemy of anxiety.

Do you want your nervous system to thank you? Breath slow and steady. Breathing is the focus when practicing Yoga. This practice offers you an opportunity to learn how to breathe in a way that produces a calming effect; there are loads of techniques. And when it comes to anxiety self-management techniques, controlled breath is essential. Yoga can help because it slows down your nervous system by using breathing techniques. You benefit from learning ways of breathing that help you ride the wave of emotions until they become settled water. This will serve you well when dealing with the rough and shallow breaths caused by anxiety.

Now that we discussed the breathing involved in Yoga being slow and controlled, let’s discuss the movement, they too are described the same way. Postures and poses in this form of mindful exercise are done in ways that allow you to focus on each segment of your body. Not only does paying attention to our body help us care for it, but the attention also promotes relaxation and eases the tension that builds up from anxiety or stress. Combining these motions with the mindful breathing gives you maximum benefit and creates a cycle of wellness in which your newly relaxed body encourages more positive thinking.

Performing Yoga is a form of self-care, something those of us with anxious souls so often neglect. Activities in which we care for ourselves, like getting pedicures, eating well, visiting with friends, or exercising like Yoga involve setting aside time to treat ourselves well. This time replenishes, rather than taking away from our well-being the way many of our daily practices can.

Rumination is a practice in which thoughts, usually negative, play in your mind over and over. You probably already know how difficult it can be to break these nasty thought cycles. Fortunately, Yoga has a way of doing just that rather easily. When you focus on your breathing and body movement, your mind tends to be in the here and now. The ruminating stops and you become mindful of the way your body feels, the sounds in the room, and the manner of your breath. It’s quite calming.

These are just some of the many benefits of Yoga for lowering anxiety and stress. Start a yoga practice of your own, with your doctor’s consent, and you’ll see for yourself how Yoga can help.

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