Feeling tense? You’re not alone. If you’re juggling work and childcare, worried about financial security, fearful of COVID-19 or experiencing social isolation (or maybe all of the above!), you could probably use a break. The fact is, ongoing stress and anxiety can lead to a number of health issues, from headaches and heartburn to insomnia and low sex drive. Consider the following strategies to help ease your mind and relax your body.
1. Boost your magnesium.
Adding a magnesium supplement like Sisu Magnesium Relaxation Blend—especially before bed—can temporarily help you achieve a more relaxed state. The specially-formulated powder also contains GABA and L-Theanine, which work together to improve sleep quality and duration. Plus, it comes in three amazing flavours (Raspberry Lemonade, Tart Cherry and Honey Grapefruit). Add one scoop to cool or warm water for a flavourful drink before bed or whenever you need to find a moment of calm.
Photo Credit: Sisu
2. Diffuse a calming or brightening scent.
If your diffuser is stashed in the closet, buried under the extra towels (or if you don’t even own one yet!), it’s time to make a change. Diffusing essential oils in your home can not only make your space smell warm and inviting, but it may also improve your mood. Invigorating bergamot (a hybrid of bitter orange and lemon) has been shown to alleviate anxiety, while lavender is perfect for calming and relaxing after a long day, as well as enouraging a more restful sleep. You can also add a few drops of essential oil to your bath water to make any day a spa day.Photo Credit: Shutterstock
3. Connect to your breath.
When we’re stressed, many of us hold our breath or take quick, shallow breaths. Quite simply, these inadequate breaths don’t bring enough oxygen into the body, leading to muscle tension, fatigue, brain fog, and a number of other issues. The bottom line? Stressed breathing can actually make us feel more stressed. So, if you’re an involuntary breath holder, it’s time to take a (literal) breather: Focus on the sensation of your body inhaling and exhaling. If you’re new to deep breathing, start with “belly breathing.” Here’s how:
- Inhale slowly through your nose and feel your diaphragm pull down toward your stomach, gently pushing out your belly. Your chest should not rise.
- Exhale slowly through pursed lips and feel your stomach “sink” back in.
- Repeat, keeping your attention on the gradual movement of air in and out.
- If you’re struggling to feel your belly move, place your hand on your abdomen and work on moving it out and in as you inhale and exhale.
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The good news? You can use this technique anywhere and anytime, whether you’re watching TV, sitting at work, doing the dishes or walking the dog.
4. Try Progressive Muscle Relaxation.
Get comfortable and take a moment to get in touch with your body. Scan from the top of your head to the bottoms of your feet and feel where you’re holding tension. Now start again from the top and slowly tense one part of your body (say your jaw or your shoulders), holding for five seconds before releasing. Repeat for each muscle group, one at a time, slowly working your way down your body. This technique is known as Progressive Muscle Relaxation (PMR). If you like, set a timer for 10 or 15 minutes so you aren’t constantly checking your watch or phone.Photo Credit: Shutterstock
If you can fit one or two of these tricks into your daily routine, or take a little time for yourself each weekend, you’ll be on the way to better life balance.
Sisu’s Magnesium 250 Relaxation Blend contains no dairy, wheat, gluten or soy and is suitable for vegans. For more information on the benefits, visit sisu.com