August 2018 - Feeling overwhelmed?


School is back in session and fall is almost upon us. We can sense change and a faster pace of life from the lazy days of summer. This increase in activity, comes at a cost, with stress levels rising along with the quickened tempo of life and our traffic.

The human physical body (Homo-sapiens), has not changed much in the over 200,000 years since our ancient ancestors first walked the earth, but the world around us has changed at exponential speed. Today from the moment our alarm clock goes off in the morning, until we lay our head down to sleep, our senses are overwhelmed with sensory overload from the advanced technological world in which we live.

Tools, such as smart phones, that should have made our lives easier, can become addictions, consuming our consciousness and eroding our concentration. More and more children, at surprisingly young ages are already suffering the effects of this over stimulation, which did not exist 50-years ago. Left untreated, stress levels increase and begin to take a toll on our nervous system; manifesting themselves as anxiety or full blown panic attacks. If anxiety is not addressed, depression soon follows; even other mental conditions can occur.

"Quiet the mind, and the soul will speak."

Thankfully the ancient science of yoga and meditation not only soothes the effects of this over stimulated world, but also treats the actual root causes of stress and it’s symptoms, our overactive mind. While we cannot control our thoughts, we can learn to stop our thoughts from controlling us. Yoga offers a pallet of tools to deal with our world; allowing us to remain calm even in these challenging times. If you have not tried a "Restorative Yoga Class" yet, we would highly recommend it, as it is so relaxing and stress reducing.

Here are six simple things that may help, if you feel overwhelmed:

EXERCISE - Make time for 20-minutes of exercise daily, even a brisk walk. When we are too busy to exercise, that is when we need it the most.

BREATHE - Lay down and practice deep diaphragmatic breathing. I recommend placing a book or even your hands on your belly. On the inhale, feel the belly rise as much as possible, then on the exhale feel the breath leave your body and lower your belly as much as possible. Longer exhales engage the parasympathetic nervous system, releasing pleasant hormones such as oxytocin, allowing the mind to calm.

"When you own your breath, no one can steal your peace."

MAKE A LIST - Create a "To Do List" of the items that make you feel overwhelmed and need to get done. Our human brain will reward us with a release dopamine, which is connected to feelings of pleasure, when we check an item off the list.

CALMING DIET - Watch your intake of stimulants such as coffee, sugar and especially nicotine.

PASSION - Spend 20-Minutes a day doing something you are passionate about and allows your mind to get so engrossed in doing, that you lose a sense of time. Lose yourself and find yourself at the same time.

HIGHER AUTHORITY - Pray or meditate for 5-minutes, right when you wake up or just before going to sleep. Learn to change the things in your life which should not be endured and endure the things you cannot change.

"May every sunrise give you a sense of hope and every sunset leave you with a feeling of peace."

See You On The Mat,

David Yglesias

President & Founder E-RYT-500