Reduce Stress and Anxiety – An Easy and Natural Way
Controlling how you breath can help reduce stress and anxiety symptoms and even increase your happiness. Did you get that?
Increase your happiness…Just being aware of your breath can make you happier…
Several of our essential bodily functions such as our digestion, heart rate, body temperature and breathing are all functions controlled by our autonomic nervous system – subconsciously controlled by our ingenious brain.
However we can also consciously control one of these essential functions – the breathe.
Why Reduce Stress and Anxiety?
The World Health Organisation (WHO) Global Burden of Disease Survey estimates that by the year 2020, stress-related mental health conditions including anxiety and depression will be highly prevalent. That’s less than 4 years away!
Meanwhile, work-related stress represents a significant ill-health condition in the workforce of Great Britain, accounting for 35% of work-related illnesses.
So how can something as every day and simple as breathing help those statistics?
Because it IS just that….breathing something we do EVERYDAY and it’s SIMPLE.
The use of mindful breathing is scientifically proven to work. Did you know that in the USA the navy seals use breathing and mindfulness practices before going into battle? To help them focus and reduce stress levels. Guys like that don’t use techniques that aren’t proven to work.
Reduce Stress and Anxiety with the Inner Axis Technique
This practice is a system that can be taken into various environments, such as the corporate world or wellness retreats and is marketed less as a yoga practice and more of a well-being exercise.
It encases breath-work and breath-based movement. This helps individuals reduce the symptoms of stress and anxiety which will naturally lead to better sleep patterns.
I attended Max’s workshop at Triyoga , London a while ago and was struck by the technique’s simplicity but effectiveness.
I loved it…
How Inner Axis Can Reduce Stress and Anxiety
The practice focused on such ideas as expanding the rib cage outwards, inhaling and exhaling through the mouth, (which feels rather alien at first) standing mindful movements and pranayama – breath control through counting and retaining the breath.
It reminded me of Chi gong and Tai chi in its flow and focus.
I believe it’s a practice more available to those not taken by yoga and the world it’s created around itself; Encompassing elements of moving with the breath as in gentle flow yoga practice, building up strength and stamina without difficult postures.
Ramping up the focus on the breath and increasing mindfulness in each movement can only be of a benefit – both physically and mentally.
I’m looking to incorporate Max’s ideas into my yoga classes melding them with my own mindfulness techniques to help my students reduce their stress and anxiety symptoms. By helping them feel better, they’ll be happier and in turn be able to help others… it’s like a happiness chain…!
‘When we are in pain, we become self-centered and myopic. When we heal, we become more empathetic, self-less, and sympathetic to the pain and welfare of others. It is our gift to others to heal ourselves.’ Max Strom
If you are interested in Max’s Inner Axis practice or have one of your own you do to alleviate your times of stress and anxiety, I’d love to hear from you!
Photo thanks to Dasha Levchuk