This is an article I wrote for Island Magazines, but it bears distributing wider as Stress and the Nervous System seems to come up a lot in class and, let’s face it, which of us haven’t been stressed at some time?
Don’t Get Stressed About It!
How often do you find yourself with a busy day and no time to stop as you balance competing demands on your time? All the while your phone keep beeping at you with texts, emails and Facebook updates demanding attention. Familiar?
Stress – or more correctly how we react to stress – is an increasing cause of ill health. It’s a vicious circle, as we respond to stresses our Sympathetic Nervous System – known as Flight or Fight – ramps up and delvers Cortisol and Adrenalin both of which act as stimulants to the Nervous System, leading it to respond with more of the same until our body approaches overload. Meanwhile our Immune System is compromised, our digestion sluggish and our body is on an exhausting constant state of alert.
The key to managing the stress cycle is a strong Parasympathetic Nervous System – known as Rest and Digest – to bring the body back into a state of balance as stresses pass, by dampening the Sympathetic Nervous System. Unfortunately when we live busy lives this response becomes weak, stoking the vicious circle.
A mind body practice like Yoga is ideally placed to help restore balance in the Nervous System so both branches are working optimally and the body manages stress loads and recovery.
If you are someone who feels stress is getting on top of you at times, then why not look up a local yoga class this autumn and see if it can help you out. The slow Yin / Restorative focus of my classes are ideal to counter stress.