Britta Van Dun
A Healthy & Balanced Life
Updated: Jan 2, 2020
Intuitive Health & Healing tips to reduce stress and increase wellbeing.
1. Breathe - In a safe place (not driving for example), close your eyes or allow the gaze to soften. Come into the present moment. Consciously notice your inhalation and exhalation. That’s One breath cycle. Notice the cycle again, that’s Two. And again. That’s Three. Start again at One. Repeat the three breath cycle three more times for a total of 9 cycles. How’s that feel? Note: this is one breath awareness practice. Take a moment to explore a few others.
2. Notice - Take a deep breath and sigh it out. Take another deep breath and invite all the muscles of the body to relax. Settle into a comfortable position, either sitting with the back supported or laying down. Start to notice sensations in the body, beginning with the crown of your head. Without judgement of good or bad, neutrally observe the sensations as a naturalist might. You may notice warmth, coolness, touch of clothing, touch of air, touch of breath, vibration, pulsing, pressure, tightness, and so on. Travel awareness through the face, back of the head, throat and neck. Then notice sensations in your shoulders, upper arms, forearms, wrists, hands and fingers. Bring your attention to the upper, mid and low back and then the front of the chest, abdomen and low belly. Notice sensations in the pelvis and upper thighs and knees, through the shins, calves, ankles, feet and toes. Take a deep breath and draw your awareness up through the feet all the way back up to the top of the head. This is wonderful to practice in bed after waking or before falling to sleep.
3. Quiet - Set a timer for 5 minutes. Feel into your body and experience the support of the furniture, floor and earth beneath you. Allow the eyes to close or soften the gaze. Take a few gentle breaths into the low body. Invite the mind to quiet. I often start with an inner mantra, “calm and quiet.” Perhaps practice the breath awareness outlined in No. 1. Follow the breath or scan the body. Each time you notice the mind wandering, smilingly return to your method of meditation. There are dozens of ways to meditate. Try a few to see what resonates and works best for you.
4. Move - Wherever you are, whatever you are doing, there is always an opportunity to feel into and move your body. If seated at work or at home, gently stretch your neck forward and to the sides. Roll your shoulders, wrists and ankles. Take a few moments to bend forward to stretch your back and backs of legs. Take a break and go for a walk in nature* or around the block. Check out yoga, tai qi, dance and swim classes. Maybe boxing or jogging or hiking or pilates or cycling is your thing and you just didn’t know it yet. Discover what feels good (during and after). When you’re ready, block time in your calendar to move that body 3-5 days/week for 45-60 min.
5. Care - If you are in physical pain, navigating emotional upsets, struggling with bigger life choices, uncovering addiction, feeling stuck or just in need of a little extra backing, reach out. Take a break and talk to a friend, find a specialist like an acupuncturist, reiki practitioner, or cranial sacral therapist, check out in-person and online support groups. Hang out with your favorite animals, schedule special dates with loved ones, take time off to be and engage a favorite activity. Whatever it looks like for you, take care.
*I can’t over-emphasize the subtle yet profound healing that comes with communing with the natural world around us.