by Lovena Suson | Apr 22, 2021 | Pain Management
The Secret to Getting Powerful Pain Relief Through Meditation
Would you like to reduce pain without the side effects that accompany medication? You can, with a simple meditation practice. Meditation can be a very valuable tool to ease pain, stress, even anxiety.
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Scientists have been studying Zen monks to learn how meditation helps them cope with both chronic and occasional pain. While some of their accomplishments depend on their faith, many of their techniques can be used by anyone. Whether or not you already have a meditation practice, the suggestions below can help you get relief from pain.
TOOLS FOR MEDITATION
1. Appreciate the mind-body connection. There’s a growing understanding that our health depends on a wide range of factors. Our mind and body interact closely. This is a psychosomatic connection. The pain we experience due to physical conditions such as arthritis also affects us emotionally.
2. Reduce apprehension. Your reaction to pain can become exaggerated if you anticipate that it’s going to occur. Fear of pain is a good thing when it helps you avoid dangerous situations. It’s less helpful if you dwell on how your back will keep hurting. Mindfulness meditation helps you live in the present moment and take a break from worries about the future.
3. Manage anxiety. Studies show that experienced meditators feel pain but experience less emotional impact. Even beginners can use meditation as a useful distraction. With practice, you can become more skilled at noticing the affected body part but declining to get upset about it. You may be able to notice the sensation of pain without judging it as unpleasant.
4. Fight depression. Depression is known to make the pain worse. When meditation helps you to feel happier and more peaceful, it’s also giving you greater protection from all kinds of afflictions.
5. Loosen up. Many people feel some tension around an injured body part. If you’re nursing a stiff neck, you can focus on relaxing the area and opening it up. Imagine that your breath is flowing across the muscles, where it warms and heals them.
6. Engage the pain. Pain may command all of your attention when it becomes severe. In such cases, trying to resist it may just make things worse. Some patients find relief by taking an active role in rating the relative intensity of their symptoms or observing how they increase and decrease over time.
7. Get an early start. It’s a lot more challenging to learn to meditate when you’re in the middle of recovering from back surgery. By starting your practice in advance, you’ll be better prepared to cope with medical issues or the common aches that come with aging.
WHEN YOU’RE NOT IN MEDITATION
1. Understand the relevance of meditation breaks: You’ll probably spend most of your life away from the meditation cushion. By learning to access the states of mind you attain while meditating, you can take advantage of those benefits anytime you want.
2. Pay attention to your body & use pain as a cue. Even if you need to keep working when a headache hits, you can guide yourself with constructive reminders about how to deal with it. Use everyday discomforts to check in with yourself and see if anxiety and apprehension are building up.
3. Guard yourself against depression. Depression can strike anybody, but you can lower your risks. A healthy lifestyle and a positive attitude can make it easier to stay on track. Depression is very common not just in adults but in children too. Your child sees how you feel and are quite astute at reading your body language. They tend to be in tune with their parent’s moods. Take care of yourself so you can take care of them too.
4. Reduce other sources of stress. This may be easier said than done. However, it is imperative to address stressors that are within your control. Living with chronic pain can take a heavy emotional toll. It does tend to affect people around you too. If possible, build a strong support network and avoid taking on too many obligations.
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5. Consult with your doctor. If symptoms of pain continue, talk with your doctor about other available methods of treatment. Fortunately, meditation can be used to complement conventional approaches. It is not a cure in itself.
Anyone can get started with meditation. Meditation is affordable. A myriad of resources can be accessed through books, audiobooks, and even just searching online. Youtube alone has videos to guide you with meditation. It is an effective method for treating physical and emotional suffering without harmful side effects. As you continue to practice, your skills will improve You will then spend less time worrying about pain and more time enjoying life.
🙏A Simple Guide of Meditation for Beginners
- Find a quiet area where you sit or lie down comfortably. There are meditation cushions that you can buy. I just use a cozy body pillow I already have. If lying down, rest your hands on your sides and visualize that they are heavy but relaxed.
- Closing your eyes allows you to focus and feel as visual feedback that can distract you from seeing your surroundings limit your other senses to focus and feel.
- Make your breathing effortless. simply breathe naturally, in through your nose and out through your mouth in a very relaxed manner.
- With eyes closed, focus on your breath: on how the upper body, torso, and chest rises and falls as you breathe slowly, in, and out. Inhale…… Exhale…..
- Feel and sense your chest, shoulders, rib cage, and belly. Focus your attention on your breathing without controlling its pace or intensity. Just let it flow. Your body limp and relaxed. Do not allow your mind to wander;
- It helps to visualize being in a place that is most relaxing and calming for you. As a tip, I search and look at a specific image of nature that I like. I search this online. Then I visualize myself in the midst of that serene place. Below is an example of an image where I visualize myself in its midst.
Practice this meditation for two to three minutes to start, and then try it for longer periods. I seem to have a better and deeper trance when I also listen to meditation music. Try this and it is truly amazing the tranquility you will feel when you allow your body and mind to be free and calm for a few minutes.
Hope this helps!
👉👉👉The Power of Deep Breathing & What You Should Know
Any Questions? Any thoughts you may have about these topics, do get in touch!
👉👉👉Click here to contact me. Would love to hear from you!
by Lovena Suson | Mar 23, 2021 | Health & Fitness, Stress Management
Discover The Power of Deep Breathing
With the current health environment, we have all heard about the effects of COVID 19 on the respiratory system. The need for ventilators and a continuous supply of oxygen just to survive was common. For survivors who lived through the corona-virus onslaught, their fight was fierce. Unable to breathe on their own and the anxiety of other complications are known facts.
It makes one realize that something that we enjoy for free every day can mean the fine line between life and death once your body succumbs to the coronavirus.
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Deep breathing techniques are often cited as an important tool that can help you immediately alleviate stress, anxiety, frustration, and anger. This is also especially useful to the COVID 19 survivors.
Many people have difficulty practicing deep breathing exercises because they either don’t believe that it can help or they try once and are not motivated to try again. No judgment, as I myself am guilty of forgetting this very simple activity that can make a difference in how your day goes. So I have programmed my watch to remind me to take deep breaths every hour.
The same is true for breathing exercises, however, as is true for many other things: practice makes perfect. It is a surprising fact that many of us do not really know the proper and ideal breathing pattern! Singers however are trained to breathe using the diaphragm efficiently for volume.
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The more you get into a routine of practicing breathing exercises, the better you will become at doing so. This will give you the ability to reduce stress, anger, and frustration with more ease than before.
Why do breathing exercises work to relax our bodies and minds?
The body has two systems within the nervous system: the parasympathetic and the sympathetic nervous system.
Both of these systems contribute to the reasons why deep breathing exercises can calm us down.
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Discover how the nature of our physiological systems contributes to the positive effects.
The Fight or Flight Response
Our biological systems have a natural ability to react during times of stress, especially in those situations where we face a significant threat. As a matter of survival, humans have this innate ability. In prehistoric times, humans came face-to-face with all sorts of wild animals, such as bears or tigers.
In response to such a threat, our body activates the Fight, Flight, or Freeze Response, or FFF reaction.
The sympathetic nervous system is responsible for the physical sensations we get when we feel stress, anxiety, or severe anger and frustration. These can include sweaty palms, increased heart rate, and faster breathing. The activation of the FFF response is preparing our bodies to either run, fight the threat, or freeze.
The problem with the activation of the Fight or Flight Response is that it can be activated whenever we perceive that we’re up against a threat – whether we really are facing a threat or not.
Even though we experience negative situations in our lives, this does not necessarily make them a threat to our physical well-being.
Situations involving personal relationships, work responsibilities, work promotions, verbal arguments with others, and bad news about your health or the health of loved ones are just a few scenarios that can trigger the flight or fight response.
Despite the fact that all of these situations may be emotionally hurtful or painful, our body’s nervous system may interpret them as physically threatening. As such, our bodies activate the natural FFF response to get us ready to fight or run away.
Triggering the Opposite Reaction
In order to tell our biological systems that the situations we’re facing don’t require a fight or flight response, we must trigger the parasympathetic nervous system. The parasympathetic nervous system produces the opposite response to the FFF, causing a relaxation response instead.
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One other important aspect of the Fight or Flight Response is the way that it diverts your blood flow. To prepare you to fight or to get ready to run from a perceived threat, blood is diverted away from the brain to the extremities in the body, such as the arms, legs, hands, and feet.
Deep Breathing Reverses This Process
Breathing exercises send the blood supplies back from the extremities (since we’re not concerned with running or fighting) to the areas of the brain that allow us to think, reason, and problem solve.
TIP: When you notice that your blood pressure is high, take slow deep breaths for at least 10 repetitions. Then take your blood pressure again. You will notice a drop in the reading just with deep breathing. Although this may not be the ultimate solution for controlling high blood pressure it can at least help you deal with it for the moment.
This is why breathing exercises work to calm us when we experience acute stress, anger, or frustration. Blood is returning to the brain and it becomes easier for us to think.
How to Practice Deep Breathing
There are several ways in which you can practice deep breathing to relax both your body and mind.
The simplest way to practice in times of stress or anger is to:
1. Close your eyes. This eliminates distractions in your surrounding.
2. Tense your whole body for four seconds while inhaling deeply: In through your nose.
3. Exhale slowly. This is out through your mouth, slightly pursed lips to regulate the volume of airflow.
4. Repeating this three or four times can take you back to a state of relaxation and calm.
When you are calm, your brain is clearer which helps with being able to think better and make more rational decisions and actions.
As you can see, the body’s natural ability to fight or flee from a perceived threat has been useful throughout the ages and is still useful today.
However, reversing the process through breathing exercises place you in a better position to think more clearly and reason about the stress or issue that you’re facing.
Set your Fitbit or Apple watch to remind you to take deep breaths throughout the day!
Until next time folks!
by Lovena Suson | Jan 25, 2020 | Uncategorized
Patrick Diver, Owner of Strength Clinic at www.mystrengthclinic.com .(I requested this friend to share his take on stress.)
For over 15 years, Patrick has led the way to exceptional fitness results for a diverse range of Orlando men and women and has supervised over 25,000 injury-free workouts.
A graduate of Missouri State University with a B.S. in Sports Medicine and Athletic Training, Patrick’s first certification came from the National Athletic Trainers Association and was followed by certifications from Superslow innovator Ken Hutchins (Superslow Exercise Guild) and YMCA research director Wayne Wescott (Nautilus).
Patrick also speaks regularly and has been featured on Fox-35, News Channel 13, and had given over 150 fitness talks to many of Central Florida’s most successful companies including Darden Restaurants, Lowndes, Drosdick, Doster, Kantor & Reed, Universal Creative, and the Orlando Economic Development Commission.
Besides a passion for helping men and women realize their best physical potential, Patrick competes regularly in cycling with multiple states, regional, and national championship medals to his credit, and enjoys playing guitar and taking care of his dog, named Dog.
Stress: Is it good, bad, needed, or unwanted?
I believe most things in life necessitate a balanced approach: The Yin and Yang if you will. I think stress falls in this umbrella as well. We need a certain amount of stress in life. Without it, it is easy to become stagnant and cease growing.
In my field, muscle tissue is a good example. You’ve probably heard that when you add and develop muscle tissue, your metabolism gets a boost. What does this mean exactly, “get a boost?”
This means that the body burns extra calories. That’s one of the good side effects of strength training – and one you have probably heard of. That is the reason for the current craze in fitness, body-building, and the obsession for the perfect body.
Your body, however, wants to be efficient. It doesn’t really want to burn extra calories because, in the days gone by, it might have been difficult to find those “extra” calories.
So, if it’s not using muscle to full effect – in other words, if they are not being utilized or stressed on a regular basis to maintain function, then the body will get rid of what it views as metabolically “expensive” tissue.
So in this case, stress is not only desired but absolutely crucial to continue living a high quality of life.
Of course, the application of stress has to be measured.
Where people get into trouble, whether it is pursuing fitness goals, managing work/life balance, or even dealing with emotions, is when they take on too much stress, without having a means for downtime, rest, and recovery. We become engrossed with stress.
I account for this in my Ironclad Rules. Rule #7 is to: Keep a Relaxed-Focus. This is another way of saying the same thing.
The continued pursuit of success in life will be difficult to achieve in a negative or overly stressful environment.
A certain amount of calm and objectivity is needed.
However, you can’t allow yourself to be so calm that you blow things off or shirk responsibilities – hence, Keeping a relaxed focus.
So, while too much stress will ultimately shut down any system, too little stress will yield undesirable results as well.
Like most things in life, it is really about balance.
Stress is unavoidable. It is a significant part of our daily responsibilities and existence. Although there may be a few lucky individuals who claim they have a stress-free life, it may be because they have learned to navigate its complexities and have adapted effectively. A few have found the equilibrium in the midst of the chaos of daily existence.
We, as mammals of the highest cognitive faculties, possess that capacity to adapt. Though we deal with stress in many different ways based on our psyche and predilections for survival, there is hope. We are ultimately responsible for actions that will allow us to prevail. Just take that step.
As the song goes, “learning to love yourself, is the greatest gift of all,” carries a profound meaning that we ourselves often forget. Many among us tend to get inundated with the need to take care of others and take on responsibilities because we feel we have to. This often becomes a burden that sooner or later snowballs into something that is overwhelming. These stressors soon take away the joy out of life.
Find that balance. Take care of yourself. Find what works for you.
This simple book just provides an overview of the options. There are more out there by individuals who found that key to a productive life and an efficient way of navigating life’s complexities. Study and learn. Adapt.
Yes, stress can be perceived as unpleasant. Yet, most people find and discover their own strengths in times of adversity.
As Kelly Clarkson’s song goes, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”. Cliche, but its truth rings true. ~~~***~~~
by Lovena Suson | Nov 5, 2019 | Health & Fitness
Our Feet are always the last things we think of when it comes to our overall health, let alone considering any form of massage in these areas.
10 Reasons for Having a Foot Massage
Getting a good foot massage is something individuals should consider, especially for those who walk a lot during the day. A simple foot massage at home before bed can be all you need to ensure you have overall good health. Having this foot massage just before going to bed has tons of unexpected benefits than you can’t imagine. You don’t have to go to a Spa to do this, it can be done remotely at home and here are some of the benefits attached to this exercise:
1. It helps you relax.
A foot massage after a long and tiring day is one of the best stress pain-relieving treats one can enjoy when they get home. It is therapeutic in the sense that, feet being stroked gently, pulled or pressed helps you relax. It helps your feet get relieved of any pressure that may have been inflicted on it during the day.
2. Aid in blood circulation.
Stroking and pressing ones’ feet during a foot massage allows improved circulation to the veins and capillaries to facilitate proper blood circulation. Good blood circulation ensures diminished risks of getting heart diseases, varicose veins, among other illnesses, brought about by increased blood pressure. To achieve this, one has to carry out the right foot massage. This may involve pulling your finger toes, stroking all areas of the foot gently to facilitate blood circulation. It is easy to learn the technique.
3. Better sleep
Foot Massage is the right way of ensuring that one can sleep well, especially if you are a person who has sleeping disorders. This can also be due to stress. There are times when you are not able to get enough sleep that the body needs.
If the foot massage is done in the right way, it is an excellent promoter of sleep. The foot massage pressure should just be applied to the right areas to achieve this benefit.
4. Fights depression
Proper Foot massage is an excellent way to fight depression. Receiving a foot massage during a stressful period can go way further in helping you deal with the situation.
It provides consolation and balance that the body needs to respond well to the changes, the most sort after points would be at the center of the big toe or the center of your foot. It gives you much needed mental health and emotional stability.
5. Relieves pain and aches
Headaches and neck pains are a common phenomenon. An option for symptom relief to this can be a foot massage. Stretching during a foot massage allows better blood flow to the legs and feet to help relieve discomfort.
Pulling your toes gently provides relief from the pains and aches that you’re feeling in your body.
6. Healthier feet
Massage on your body ensures that you maintain healthier feet. It makes your ankles stable and flexible, keeping you safe from injuries and feet burning sensations. With frequent foot massage, you are sure to stay healthier form infections and other diseases.
A foot massage ensures that blood flows well in the feet, thus giving your feet a good feel. It goes further to ensure your feet stay healthy all through.
7. Curbs Edema.
Foot Massage is an excellent way of reducing the effects of edema. It ensures that fluids in the lower region of the body are well circulated, thus protecting you from the frequent occurrences of edema.
This is a typical recommendation to most pregnant women, it can be done with a friend or a specialized reflexologist.
8.Reduces PMS and menopause symptoms
Premenstrual syndrome is a significant problem with many women and young ladies; it is a state that causes sadness, irritability, insomnia, among other fatigue-related complications.
A foot massage allows improved circulation able to reduce the severity of these complications. The effects of menopause like depression can be reduced with foot massage on the inner foot.
Nonetheless, A foot massage ensures that couples enjoy a healthy sex life. A foot massage ensures that your partner can relax and reduce tension and stiffness in the muscles.
9. Lowers blood pressure
Regular Foot massage ensures that instances of high blood pressure are controlled; this is because foot massage helps reduce ones’ systolic blood pressure and triglyceride. This can be achieved by squeezing each side of your foot.
Proper blood circulation in the body is essential as it ensures a constant blood pressure that is essential for the organization.
This is well achieved when one’s feet are squeezed, and the toes pulled gently as it opens up the veins and capillaries.
10.Helps with restless leg syndrome
Regular Foot massage also benefits individuals with restless leg syndrome can facilitate getting enough sleep at night. A regular foot massage may be just the right thing needed to get undisturbed sound sleep.
Good blood flow makes it easier to sleep as the body is relaxed and blood flows well thus giving you improved
In conclusion, a few minutes of foot massage before going to bed is a self-pampering worth trying.
One can enjoy benefits attached to a foot massage. One can also improvise by using warm towels and oils that make the massage more relaxing…
If done every day, a foot massage can help you decrease symptoms of primary ailments.