Do you find it difficult to relax or have trouble sleeping? According to the American Psychological Association, much of your stress may be attributed to: “ineffective coping mechanisms that appear to be ingrained in our culture, perpetuating unhealthy lifestyles and behaviors for future generations."
The fact that many Americans struggle to cope with their stress probably doesn't come as much of a surprise. We've all been exposed to the crushing burden of feeling that there is never enough time in the day to get everything done. Between juggling kids, work and other responsibilities, our to-do list can seem never-ending.
Many of us spend our days running from one place to another, always trying to get ahead. As a result, our mind can be so agitated from the day-to-day grind, that it can seem nearly impossible to get calm and relaxed, even in our downtime. This can leave us tossing and turning all night.
But if you're able to shift some things around in your routine, there are plenty of simple things you can do to find relief. Whether it's spending more time outside, hanging out with friends by candlelight, or curling up in a soft chair at a local coffee shop, there are plenty of ways to incorporate mindfulness into your daily life.
And since it's not always possible to change your external circumstances, it's carving out those few moments each day that can create big changes within, decreasing your overall stress. The practice of Yoga Nidra and other forms of guided relaxation, can release muscle tension, lower blood pressure, slow down the heart rate and regulate breathing.
Here is an eight minute Yoga Nidra meditation I put together for you, to help you toward a calmer, more relaxed state of mind and a better night's sleep.
Cover photo by Kadri Kurgan
Video by Ian MacLellan
Music by Meg Hutchinson, courtesy of Red House Records