Stress reduction and adequate sleep, being between 7 to 9 hours a night, are paramount in balancing hormones and allowing for regeneration of the brain and body.
Some beauty sleep suggestions include:
Getting to bed by 10 pm.
Unplugging from electronics 30 min before bed.
Making your room as dark as a cave, no ambient light.
Keeping your room cool.
Enjoying a calming ritual before bed like soaking in a tub, listening to relaxing music, or reading something spiritual or enjoyable.
Meditation, visualization, gratitude or simply deep breathing.
De-stressing/Energy Balancing Techniques
1. Meridian Tracing
By tracing the Central and Governing meridians—Chinese Medicine subtle energy channels—you spark the flow of energy that enables you to feel centered (Central) and empowered (Governing). While standing, touch your pubis bone and trace up lightly (outside your clothing) to just below your bottom lip, touch there. That is the Central meridian, repeat 3 times. Then trace the Governing meridian by touching your tailbone and tracing up your spine, (shifting your hand as if you were zipping up a dress), so you can continue up the back of your head and over the top to just above your upper lip and touch there. Repeat 3 times. Do this in the morning, midday and evening before bed.
2. Massaging the K27 acupuncture points
Stimulating these two Kidney points helps release endorphins to relieve pain, and encourage deep breathing to reduce stress. Thy are considered master acupuncture points for balancing the health and functioning of the body. Locate the points just under the collarbones, and rub in a circular motion. You should feel a slight indentation and possible soreness. Rub with enough pressure to work through the soreness while breathing deeply for one minute. Do this in the morning, midday and evening before bed.
3. Ear Rub
By rubbing the fold and lobe of the ears you stimulate acupuncture points that relate to areas all over the body. While reducing stress with this relaxing technique, you are also clearing blocks in your energy flow to help you focus during the day, or relax at the end of it. Starting at the tops of the ears (where they connect to the head), gently rub along the inside of the fold of the ear all the way to the lobe and finish with a gentle tug on the earlobe. Repeat this 3 times. Do this in the morning, midday and evening before bed.
4. Cross Crawl
This simple movement pattern stimulates the corpus callosum in the brain, which connects the right and left hemispheres, allowing them to communicate, and the brain to work as an integrated whole. Standing with both arms raised overhead, bring the left knee up and the right hand down until they touch, replace the left foot back to the floor and the right hand overhead. Repeat with the right knee and left hand. Continue this movement for one minute. This is great to do anytime during the day when you feel stressed, depressed, angry, mentally fuzzy, or just need to stand up from your desk and “move”.
5. 4 Square breathing
Deep breathing into the belly shifts you out of the “stress” sympathetic nervous system and into the “rest” parasympathetic nervous system, which brings immediate relief from stress. Close your eyes and mouth. Breath in through your nose for 4 counts, hold for 4 counts, exhale through your nose for 4 counts, hold for 4 counts. Repeat 4 times. Do this as often as needed throughout the day. It will also help with insomnia.
These five techniques are great to do in the morning upon arising to get you going for the day, during the workday around the “afternoon low” to clear your head and help you focus, and at night before bed to relax and de-stress you for sound sleep. Give them a try, your brain and nervous system will thank you.
S.F.T. Somatic Freedom Technique
"We hold in the body countless conscious and unconscious somatic tension patterns arising from the accumulated stresses, strains and traumas of life. These tension patterns become the physical framework of "who we are." They are caused by, and in turn perpetuate, our feelings of insecurity, fatigue, anxiety and alienation.
We wear these somatic tension patterns like a protective uniform as we face the world. This "armoring" appears to protect us, but actually it keeps us locked into a static relationship to life and interferes with the innate impulse of the somatic self to simply "be" in the physical body without having to "hold" itself in any particular shape or defensive posture.
Somatic Freedom Technique facilitates the release of these somatic “holding patterns” in a deeply relaxing way allowing the somatic self to experience the freedom to simply "be" in the body. This has two profound effects. The immediate effect is deep relief from the burden of self-imposed somatic tension. This frees a tremendous amount of energy which had been locked in these tension patterns, energy which then becomes available for other vital uses, like healing. The second profound effect of SFT is that it makes the somatic self "visible" to itself. When the somatic self can "see" itself, it spontaneously moves toward somatic freedom. This is the creative alchemy of SFT. The more the somatic self has this experience, the more it learns how to live in freedom."
~Kevin Mutschler, L.Ac., creator of S.F.T. www.prohealing.net