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Stress On, Stress Off

Personalized support for learning how to integrate mindfulness into your life. Delivered fresh everyday by our world renowned experts. Choose meditation duration:

Hi, and welcome to your Daily Mindfulness. Today, I'm going to talk about the stress on-stress off approach to living well. So for most of us these days, we experience quite a bit of ongoing stress in daily life. We're often, for starters, just very busy. We have very full to-do do lists as well as worries about the world and personal challenges, such as trouble in relationships, financial difficulties, this kind of thing.

So whenever weyouget stressed or upset in daily life, your body goes into the fight or flight mode. That's evolution's way of mobilizing your body in times of stress so that you could run, fight or freeze in times of danger. That's what really kept our hunter gatherer ancestors alive. That fight or flight system was really designed to be triggered when there was immediate danger and then it would switch off for the rest of the time. But these days, we tend to have ongoing tension in the mind and body, which we pay a high price for.

It can lead to all kinds of health problems, as well as mental illnesses like anxiety and depression. So what can we do about this? Well, Dr. Herbert Benson, the author of a book called, The Relaxation Response, says that regular elicitation of the relaxation response can prevent and compensate for the damage incurred by frequent nervous system reactions that pulse through our hearts and bodies. In other words, we can go from stress on to stress off, so we can switch off the fight or flight system and switch on the relaxation response through regular deliberate relaxation. Here's three ways you can do this.

One, when you're going about daily life, ticking off tasks on your to do list, replying to emails or stuck in traffic, see if you can deliberately relax your body at will, especially the jaw and the shoulders. See if you can pause every now and then, and just let go of some of the tension in the body. Just doing that a few times throughout the day. And even if you just let go a little bit, that's still great. Second thing, take a few long, slow, deep breaths with longer exhales.

This can switch off the stress response and switch on the relaxation response. And three, schedule regular periods of relaxing activities. You know, five minute rest under a tree, hot bath, slow walk. All of these kinds of activities can be really beneficial in regulating your nervous system. So the invitation for practice today and ongoing, if you care to, is to see if you can find more balance with the stress on-stress off way of living.

The more you practice regular deliberate relaxation like this, the more you train your mind and body to naturally drop into a relaxed state for the majority of the time. So as always, thank you for your practice and your presence here with us. And let's settle in now for today's meditation.

Melli O'Brien

4.8

Stress On, Stress Off

Personalized support for learning how to integrate mindfulness into your life. Delivered fresh everyday by our world renowned experts. Choose meditation duration:

Duration

Your default time is based on your progress and is changed automatically as you practice.

Hi, and welcome to your Daily Mindfulness. Today, I'm going to talk about the stress on-stress off approach to living well. So for most of us these days, we experience quite a bit of ongoing stress in daily life. We're often, for starters, just very busy. We have very full to-do do lists as well as worries about the world and personal challenges, such as trouble in relationships, financial difficulties, this kind of thing.

So whenever weyouget stressed or upset in daily life, your body goes into the fight or flight mode. That's evolution's way of mobilizing your body in times of stress so that you could run, fight or freeze in times of danger. That's what really kept our hunter gatherer ancestors alive. That fight or flight system was really designed to be triggered when there was immediate danger and then it would switch off for the rest of the time. But these days, we tend to have ongoing tension in the mind and body, which we pay a high price for.

It can lead to all kinds of health problems, as well as mental illnesses like anxiety and depression. So what can we do about this? Well, Dr. Herbert Benson, the author of a book called, The Relaxation Response, says that regular elicitation of the relaxation response can prevent and compensate for the damage incurred by frequent nervous system reactions that pulse through our hearts and bodies. In other words, we can go from stress on to stress off, so we can switch off the fight or flight system and switch on the relaxation response through regular deliberate relaxation. Here's three ways you can do this.

One, when you're going about daily life, ticking off tasks on your to do list, replying to emails or stuck in traffic, see if you can deliberately relax your body at will, especially the jaw and the shoulders. See if you can pause every now and then, and just let go of some of the tension in the body. Just doing that a few times throughout the day. And even if you just let go a little bit, that's still great. Second thing, take a few long, slow, deep breaths with longer exhales.

This can switch off the stress response and switch on the relaxation response. And three, schedule regular periods of relaxing activities. You know, five minute rest under a tree, hot bath, slow walk. All of these kinds of activities can be really beneficial in regulating your nervous system. So the invitation for practice today and ongoing, if you care to, is to see if you can find more balance with the stress on-stress off way of living.

The more you practice regular deliberate relaxation like this, the more you train your mind and body to naturally drop into a relaxed state for the majority of the time. So as always, thank you for your practice and your presence here with us. And let's settle in now for today's meditation.

Melli O'Brien

4.8

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