Be calmer

ERIN O’HARA IS THE FOUNDER AND DI­REC­TOR OF THE GOLDEN YOGI STU­DIO AND WELL­NESS CEN­TRE IN AUCK­LAND

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16. BREATHE

When we get anx­ious and over­whelmed our breath­ing be­comes shal­low and rapid. By slow­ing down our breath­ing we feel an in­stant calm­ness as it brings us into our parasym­pa­thetic ner­vous sys­tem. You can sim­ply stop what you are do­ing at work (or while sit­ting in traf­fic), and for a cou­ple of min­utes bring your full aware­ness to your breath­ing. When you in­hale feel the belly and chest ex­pand, and as you ex­hale feel the chest soften and belly melt to­wards the spine. Try to slow the breath down to about six to eight breaths per minute.

17. MAKE A LIST

When we have a lot to do it makes us feel over­whelmed, and some­times it can feel so over­whelm­ing that we don’t know where to start. Cre­ate a to-do list to or­gan­ise your life into what needs to be done now and what can be done later. Work your way down the list, tick­ing off as you do the tasks and you’ll feel a great sense of achieve­ment.

18.TAKE A BREAK

When we’re busy we quite of­ten try to keep go­ing and go­ing with­out any breaks. Take some mo­ments away from your desk through­out the day to re­set your fo­cus and main­tain your pro­duc­tiv­ity. Try to break the habit of eat­ing your lunch at your desk.

19. WALK

When we feel like we have too much to do ex­er­cise drops off the list very quickly. Walk­ing is a great way to de­stress and calm the mind. By sim­ply putting your shoes on and walk­ing around the block – even if it’s only 10 min­utes – we can ben­e­fit the body and the mind. When we walk it boosts cir­cu­la­tion and lym­phatic flow around the body to leave us feel­ing recharged.

20. MED­I­TATE

We com­monly hear how good med­i­ta­tion is for us but quite of­ten we don’t know where to start. Usu­ally the big­gest ex­cuse I hear is “I don’t have enough time to med­i­tate”.

Take five to 10 min­utes daily and com­mit to do­ing it every day so it be­comes a habit, just like brush­ing your teeth. It can be a breath­ing med­i­ta­tion or guided through an app like Headspace to give you guid­ance.

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