The Art Of Relaxation
One of the most common reasons my clients come to me is for relief from the stresses
of everyday life.
Stress is not actually an external force working against us, but rather it is an
internal response to an external stimulus. People need a certain level of stress
in order to survive, but extreme levels of stress can be detrimental to our health.
Many health professionals believe that stress is a relating or contributing factor
in up to 75% of all illness and disease.
By learning to manage our reaction to changes, we can reduce our stress levels,
which will lead to improved health as our bodies function with greater efficiency.
Learning to relax, or making time to relax, is therefore a very important factor
in keeping healthy.
Everyone relaxes in a different way, and what works for one person won't help the
next. Some people work in the garden, some read a book, others use physical activity
such as golf, aerobics, or cycling.
Massage is a popular way to relax and de-stress, whether it is self-massage or going
to a therapist for a treatment. Not only does massage relax and ease tensions in
the body, it also helps relax and calm the mind. This aspect is further increased
by the use of certain essential oils in an aromatherapy massage. Ask your therapist
about including a facial and scalp massage in your treatment, to help release the
tightness many of us hold in our heads when stressed.
A general reflexology treatment also aids the relaxation process through working
on each of the reflexes in the feet, stimulating the entire body. Try massaging
your own feet to see how relaxing it can be.
If you are going through a period of extreme stress, take a supplement of the B-complex
vitamins, as your body's need for these increases during such times.
Don't forget to take time out for yourself. A healthy well-balanced person is better
able to react to and cope with a "stressful" incident than a person who is feeling
the burden of everyday life.
The Guardian, February 25 1999
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