How can you get the most out of the holidays without stressing out?
The hectic holiday season can leave many people feeling exhausted and anxious instead of merry and bright. Stress is also the top cause of taxing all your chakras, your immune system and your health. So, I’d like to share the stress-busting techniques I write about in The Chakra Energy Diet, now available in paperback by the way.
TAKING CHARGE OF YOUR STRESS
Whether you look to modern science or ancient wisdom, stress is seen as the root of dis-ease. According to the ancient Hawaiian Huna philosophy taught by Serge Kahili King, PhD, stress plays a part in all health problems. In fact, according to Dr. King, stress can cause tension at the physical, mental, emotional and/or spiritual level, leading to inhibited energy flow and, ultimately, illness.
There are many ways, such as yoga and meditation, that I use on a daily basis to relax my body and mind, as well as the following “instant healing” techniques taught by Dr. King.
What do I do first when feeling stressed out? I used to reach for a bag of potato chips until I was taught:
“Don’t eat when upset or angry.” Instead, I…
Take a Break and Breathe
Try this combination of breath and focused attention called Piko-piko breathing…
“Piko-piko is a special Hawaiian breathing technique that simultaneously relaxes and energizes the body,” says Dr. King. Using shamanic techniques and chakra colors, imagine breathing in bright yellow energy from the sun into your Solar Plexus or navel area and breathing out your stress. Or pull in inspiration from the heavens, visualizing violet or white light coming in with the breath through the Crown Chakra, and exhale your stress by breathing it out with awareness at the bottom of your feet.
“I know, I know, this seems almost too simple,” says Dr. King. “But it does work.”
Relieve Mental Stress
To relieve mental stress, pay more attention to what you like, rather than what you don’t. Criticism, whether of yourself or something else, creates mental stress and then tension in your body, explains Dr. King.
First of all, don’t knock your body. Praise it for every step it takes in the right direction. Try self-love, rather than self-criticism, when you look in the mirror, even after enjoying those holiday treats. Who would put up with a critical person barraging them all day with their negativity?
Push aside that critical voice in your head, and instead, focus on something you like about yourself – you’re a good person, with your own unique style and taste.
A good morning practice, when you first look in the mirror, is to spend a full minute focusing on everything you like about yourself…telling yourself out loud everything you like about yourself. This is a quick mental stress reliever I learned from Dr. King called “Saturation Praise.”
Don’t Push Down Uncomfortable Emotions
On the emotional level, anger is often tied to inflammatory processes which damage the body, one of only many reasons to practice forgiveness. If something is gnawing at you, rather than trying to calm yourself with food, decide to let it go.
Dr. King taught me a simple anger-release technique: Place one hand on an area of your body where you feel tension or inflammation, and point the other hand toward the earth, which can absorb your angst, and say, “Whatever this is related to, I release it and let it go forever” until the tension and pain eases.
Undigested emotions can lead to your body holding on to weight as well as anger or fear. Release your emotions and stop what’s eating you. There are many reasons to forgive (even if you can’t forget) transgressions – because anger only hurts YOU.
“Holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die.” ~ Buddha
You’re Already Complete and Connected
On the spiritual level, tension can come from feeling isolated or separate, and the antidote can be as easy as meditating. Dr. King suggests trying a nalu meditation, focusing for a minute on something beautiful. You will soon feel a sense of relaxation come over you and a greater connection to spirit, your higher self, or God (work with your own beliefs about this).
Once you’re in that relaxed state, it’s a good time to express gratitude for the good in your life or to ask for inspiration. When you have ideal health or reach your perfect weight, what would you like to achieve and share with the world?
Embracing the “Relaxation Response”
As you address your stress, and practice relaxation responses, your metabolism will improve, it will be easier to make nourishing food choices vs. struggling with willpower, and your body will look and feel better.
Relaxing your stress responses will allow you to better digest your food, helping you keep your waistline even during the holidays.