Work stress is running rampant. That’s bad news for your physical and mental well-being. Stress not only weighs you down, it raises your blood pressure, causes headaches, anxiety and irritability. So, what can you do about it?
While you may not be able to change your work situation, there is a wonderful source of stress relief that you deserve to be taking advantage of . . .
In this article we consider 10 ways that yoga can reduce your work stress levels.
Yoga is performed at a slower, more controlled pace than most other forms of exercise. It is a great way to get the blood circulation efficiently through your entire system. The gentle stretching that is part of yoga along with the bending and twisting allow you to get in touch with your physical self. As a result, your body will physically destress and become more relaxed.
Yoga allows you to practice mindfulness. It is a time when you are able to shut out the outside world and focus on ‘you’ time. You will be able to flush the negative energy from your body as you establish your mind-body connection. Taking a yoga class at the end of your work day can provide an ideal destressing buffer between home and work, allowing you to let go of your anxiety and unwind.
Yoga will improve both your aerobic and your anaerobic fitness levels. You’ll become stronger, more supple and more flexible. As a result, you will feel more in control of your physical self, which will help to ward off stress. If you are a weight trainer, you will also find that the regular practice of yoga will help you to be more effective on the gym floor. You’ll be more in tune with your muscles and with the proper ergonomic movement patterns you should be following.
Most of us don’t know how to breathe properly. As a result, we don’t get enough oxygen to our cells, resulting in less than optimum functioning. When you practice yoga, you will learn to
practice deep breathing from the diaphragm, and through the nose. This will increase your oxygen capacity and lower your stress levels. It will also supply more oxygen to your brain with resultant cognitive benefits.
Emotional Energy Release
Stress brings such emotions as anger, resentment and fear. Yoga provides you with a great way to safely and positively reduce that energy without getting arrested! You’ll be able to work out that pent up energy in that post workout yoga class so that it’s nowhere in sight as you head home.
Mind Body Connection
Too many people have a disconnection between their body and mind. This, in itself, contributes to stress. But, when you practice yoga, you develop your sense of body awareness, so that when you are under stress, you are more attuned to what your body needs when it needs it. That heightened sensory awareness will benefit you well beyond the yoga studio.
Regular yoga classes will release endorphins, the feel good hormones that come with sustained exercise. It doesn’t matter how stressed you’re feeling when you walk into the yoga studio, when you walk out, those endorphins will make you feel on top of the world.
The better quality sleep you get, the less stressed you will be at work the following day. Taking an hour long yoga session after work will guarantee that you sleep like a baby!
Coritsol, known as the stress hormone, can run rampant during a busy work day. Yoga not only counters this by releasing endorphins, it also causes a dramatic lowering of your cortisol
levels. As a result, your stress levels will rapidly diminish.
Staying in the Moment
When we are stressed, we are often thinking ahead, our mind racing at a million miles an hour. Yoga teaches you to stay in the moment and focus on what your mind and body are doing in the
moment. This is a fantastic stress relieving skill.
Adding a yoga class between work and home can act as a great stress buster. It will help you to let go of your work worries, become attuned both mentally and physically and set you up for a relaxing evening.