Our new-found lifestyles and businesses over the last 50 years have created an unprecedented imbalance in our interaction with nature. Both externally and internally. And this imbalance is directly responsible for rising stress.
Today, stress-related disorders account for the 6 leading causes of death – heart disease, heart attacks, brain strokes, pulmonary disease, cancers, and diabetes. Never before in history, has the human race been as self-annihilating.
But there is a silver lining to this. And that is, our distancing from nature is reversible. Stress and its ill-effects are reversible. All it takes is a little work on our individual habits. We – as individuals – can change the world’s state-of-health in a few short months.
Yes, you read right. Months. The pandemic has shown us how a few months of minimum-pollution changed the state-of-nature external to us (skies, animals, birds… you’ve seen it). It was we, who stopped our habit of using our cars incessantly, among other things.
Likewise, here are 5 habits you can adopt easily, to make your internal connection with nature rock-solid. The formula is S-M-I-L-E. And here it is:
S - SLEEP - Make sure you get 6-8 hours of rest every 24 hours. Take catnaps if needed. Keep devices away and darkness around. Good sleep recharges the entire endocrine system.
M - MEDITATE - Breathe in awareness of your breath for as little as 30 seconds at a go. Every hour, take a break and focus on 3 deep inhalations and exhalations. Mindful breathing refreshes.
I - INGEST - Eat nutritious stuff (not processed foods), and do not merely eat. Chew. Ingest well-chewed food to aid digestion and avoid inflammation. "Drink food, eat water" - MK Gandhi.
L - LAUGH - Find a funny perspective to everything. Laugh out loud. Shake your body laughing and release all the tensions that you otherwise tend to accumulate. Laughter eases our joints.
E - EXERCISE - Every hour or two, make a deliberate move. Stretch. Walk. Bend. Twist. Exercise is about moving energy in our channels, not picking dumbbells. Move consciously.
These daily habits will leave you feeling renewed every minute of every day. And that will give you the inner power to counter stressful events around you.
Stress management is not about being better than external forces. It is about being aligned with internal forces. And habits of RENEWALism make this possible!