Reducing stress means the body is not constantly fighting to balance it’s energies therefore it can concentrate on areas that need attention. Incorporating relaxation techniques into our lifestyle improves the immune system to boost recovery and help to prevent illnesses. Relaxation reduces stress which decreases the risk of heart attack, stroke and high blood pressure. It also decreases the rate at which parts of our DNA wear out, thus decelerating the ageing process.
Relaxation techniques are an integral part of stress inoculation therapy. It forms the initial step when working on phobic responses as well as preparing to cope with stress more effectively. Securing a relaxed state of mind makes it difficult for anxieties to invade and coexist. Relaxation aims to induce the Alpha state which is the state that we naturally pass through when falling asleep. During this altered state, breathing and heart rate slows and blood pressure decreases to a resting level. Adrenaline levels drop and endorphin levels rise to ease pain and tension.
Meditation is to the mind what sleep is to the body. There is a misconception surrounding meditation therefore people have unrealistic expectations so they tend to give up. The brain is functioned to think, don't expect to clear your mind, just distract it to focus on one thing which aims to eliminate external influences to find inner peace. Meditation stabilises the mind and pays attention to what we are doing, while we are doing it, in essence being 'present'.
Meditation is a state of consciousness that allows you to go deep inside yourself. Meditation engenders a left to right brain shift therefore you may feel a tingling on left side of the body whilst meditating. The left-side of the brain is considered to be adept at tasks that involve logic, language and analytical thinking whereas the right is more expressive and creative. People who meditate grow grey matter in areas of the brain which help us become non-judgemental and loving. It reveals qualities of wisdom and compassion. Meditation is a relationship with yourself.