When it comes to stress, the negative connotations certainly outweigh the positive. Despite that, stress is a normal, healthy reaction to a change in environment or circumstances that help us to adapt and conform to new situations. When stress is mishandled or allowed to build up, however, it can be detrimental to health, affecting normal bodily processes and leading to things like anxiety and depression.
What is Chronic Stress?
Mismanaged stress allowed to build up over long periods of time leads to chronic stress, which can ultimately lead to both physical and emotional consequences. This type of stress is not usually caused by a single factor or change but is brought on by a series of stressors that all collectively contribute to a drawn-out feeling of being overwhelmed or unable to take action. A prolonged busy season at work, a drawn-out move to a new city, or welcoming a new child into your home can all be reasons that stress is allowed to build up over a long period of time.
How Can Yoga Reduce Stress?
- It relaxes the body – the simple act of stretching allows the body to recover from physical harm and tightness caused by stress. When adding in more difficult poses and inversions, your body creates endorphins and generates greater blood flow, reducing stress from within.
- It relaxes the mind – when adding the meditative effects of yoga to your daily or weekly schedule, your mind is allowed to be at peace. The simple act of following through a series of poses or focusing on your breathing allows you to be better equipped to handle stressors that come up in everyday life.
- It allows for better control of thoughts – given the structure and repetitive nature of yoga, repeated practices can build your mind up to the control of how you think. This can then be applied to the moments in daily life where your thoughts tend to be all over the place and equips you to rein these rampant and varied thoughts into a cohesive structure.
If the stressors in your life have become overwhelming or have taken a physical or mental toll on you, yoga is a great way to reduce and manage this stress. In this sometimes hectic world, yoga can be a welcome and relaxing escape into yourself that brings forward some of your best characteristics and helps you to understand your own stressors in a new way.
To find out more about how a yoga program can reduce stress in your life, contact us today.