LIONMIND - STEP 2

Strengthen your Mind and Spirit with the LionMind Agenda - 8x mental skills for a calm mind, free spirit and brave heart.

MENTAL RECOVERY


“Your ability to generate power is directly proportional to your ability to relax.” 

David Allen

 

ADRENALIN LIFESTYLE

High tempo, enjoying a fast pace in everyday life, quick reactions, plenty of coffee and "things are going well now!". As the adrenaline in the body diminishes, do you become restless then? Living intensely can easily become an addiction.

Short-term stress, a temporary cortisol surcharge, a dopamine rush from a mobile app or results focus can be just what we need to cope with a deadline or energy to go a little further. Stress is the body's fantastic way of helping us cope with challenging situations.

It doesn't matter that we sometimes stress ourselves. But - if you are completely dependent on it to survive and become restless when unwinding or taking it easy – there is a risk both you, the work and those around you will experience some harm.

RELAX - ADJUST THE INTERNAL TEMPERATURE

WHO - the World Health Organization - has designated depression and stress as the world's leading cause of ill-health and dysfunction; these conditions have been for both cancer and cardiovascular diseases.

Although there is no fault with stress itself (the acute stress is, as I said, a superpower that mobilizes force), the long-term, chronic stress is fatal. You routinely need to set aside time for recovery so as not to tear down your internal systems, to be resourceful, feel good and live sustainably. In addition, life becomes more fun, you become more creative, relate better to others and get a stronger immune system.

"Avoid unnecessary stress, go down in pace several times a day and be aware of your breathing!"

BREATHING

Breath awareness is clearly a basic and important tool. Your breathing determines which feeling occupies you and reflects whether you are stressed or relaxed. By becoming more attentive to your breath, you can conquer the ability to control your inner tempo, regulate up or down your energy, land or increase when needed.

Breathing is - as far as we know - the only autonomous, physiological mechanism we can influence to direct research on breathing and emotions, showing that all different emotional states have their specific breathing patterns. Therefore, by changing how we breathe, we can also change how life feels.

No matter how simple it sounds, it took many years before I even managed to make conscious breathing a habit, despite the intention to do so. Exercise has now made breathing focus a natural part of my everyday life. I always do a short breathing meditation before I start working. Sometimes I also do it while I work. I focus on the breath before going into a meeting and before going out on a stage to lecture. I take a deep breath before eating. It's like conscious breath taking me to a place within - where calm is stored. Take a moment… How are you breathing right now?

NATURE

You have probably experienced how calm spreads within you when you are by water. How your body and mind relax when sitting on a soft beach, or on a swaying dock. Did you know, for example, that just by looking out over a sea, towards the horizon, your blood pressure will be lowered in seconds? There are several dominant theories as to why this is so. One says it's because the sea view is so empty of stimuli, so calm. Light scientists say that the billowing light and glitter from the surface of the sea give us peace. Another theory describes how we are biologically programmed to feel safe when we see and feel water - if we have water we know we will survive.

But there is something to it about being able to fix your eyes for a very long time, too. A fanciful view is not only beautiful, it is soothing. It has also been found that patients in hospitals heal faster if they have a green view outside the window, than those with the same medical conditions that lack windows.

PRESENCE

Mental recovery is not just the absence of activity. Proper recovery occurs when you are present in the moment, when thought trips to what has been or what is coming cease. It is a special kind of concentration, where your attention rests in information from the senses: sounds, visual impressions, temperature, touch, movements or scents that have to do with the present. It is the kind of attention that costs no energy, but rather fills us with energy. It gives you an experience of being satisfied, positive and a little happy. Calm and alert at the same time.

ACTIVE RECOVERY

You need to find a way to recover that suits you, the way you like it. You need to identify situations, places, activities and everyday moments that relieve stress and relax your system, every day. Meditation is a method - with strong scientific support - to reduce stress, strengthen conscious presence and activate the state of relaxation. It is simple and effective – a totally unflattering attention training, but many who are stressed initially find it difficult to be so still. When you are untrained, it can feel unpleasant. Yoga is a good alternative, as it contains movement.

Modern research shows that there are also many other activities that provide the same restorative effect as meditation. You may as well devote yourself to singing, dancing, running, prayer, yes even needlework, gardening and socializing with animals. The two ingredients that are needed to start the state of relaxation are common to these activities:

  1. A repetitive activity. (Focusing on breathing, a sound or movement that rhythmically recurs. It may be the feet that hit the ground as you run, the rhythm of a horse or singing a recurring chorus.)
  2. An aspiration and attitude of letting go of active thinking. To opt out of cognitive functions such as evaluating, structuring planning, performing… in favor of just experiencing. 

 

Do this:

If you have had a long period of stress, your internal state is strongly influenced by stress hormones, high demands and rapid pace. Then concrete steps are needed to get you in balance. You need to change the body's internal chemistry, reduce the amount of stress hormones in the blood system, calm down thoughts that spin in your head and open your senses. You do this best by over the next 3-4 days:

  • Turn off the phone frequently. (the harder it is, the more important)
  • Allow yourself to sleep more than usual. Addressing sleep deprivation is the most important thing to be able to think clearly and boost your immune system so you don't get sick. Let the body adjust by giving it a little extra rest.
  • When you wake up; Review your morning routine for breathing, focus, attitude and pace. Do some yoga. Long days in front of the computer or in uncomfortable shoes leave marks. Soften yourself for a more relaxed start to the day.
  • Go out into nature. It both heals and inspires! Go, paddle, climb, swim. Without goals. Get physical in a natural way. Bringing children can make it playful.
  • Read something invented. Exciting adventures help you control your thoughts and attention.
  • Treat yourself to good food, pull down on caffeine and sugar if it has been a lot of that product for a while and put on some calm and happy music.

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