Did you find January and February a bit of a slog?
Did you struggle between your need to curl up by the fire, eat and sleep more and the need to obey your environment that screeched “New Year New You!” messages at you?
We try to take on New Year Resolutions and make changes in winter time when our natural tendency is to rest and nurture. Our bodies try to keep up with the powerful mind that wills us to get up, get out and make changes. It highlights a resistance between the body and the mind.
This resistance creates much stress within ourselves which often manifests itself in the weakest part of our bodies for example throat infections, bronchitis or my personal gripe: sinusitis. Once this grabs hold, we fall like wilted flowers and wait for the sun to bloom to pick us up again.
However, in this country, we could be a long time waiting for ‘the sun to bloom’, so, is there any way that we can reduce the impact of this stress? Here are a few tips:
- Stop – when you’re still, you leave yourself open to thinking differently
- Become aware of your thoughts and feelings- look to disprove them if feeling overwhelmed
- Be mindful and ask yourself: what do I need ?(Mind, Body and Soul)
- Connect with your friends and hobbies
- Laugh – find moments of joy with friends and family, laugh out loud!
- Finally, show yourself compassion, give yourself permission and show gratitude!
Only very recently, I was reminded of the therapeutic power of laughter. A few friends and I took off for a well earned night away and belly laughed for 24 hours! It was ‘chicken soup for the soul’ and I am still living the benefits! I had forgotten the positive impact that laughter has, in fact, some research states that “laughter increases the level of antibodies in the body by 20% helping to destroy viruses and tumour cells” . Of course, it’s also a mini work-out (think facial and abdominal muscles), it helps to relieve stress (by decreasing our stress hormone, cortisol and releasing feel good endorphins). Laughter connects us with others and oh! It also burns 1.3 calories per minute!
So, be aware and take note of any resistance between your body and your mind as we enter March and the rest of the year. Aim to minimise stress by living, laughing and loving!