My first attempts of managing stress

November 2019

I realized how much stress affected my life and I needed to do something about it. My body just felt in pain every day, I used tons of steroid creams to keep my skin in one piece and I was constantly grumpy and frustrated. My back and neck were all the time really stiff and I knew this state of being would make me sick sooner or later.

A cat looking at a window
A short yoga routine in the morning made a big difference in my daily mood.

And this is where a daily yoga routine came in

Yoga reduces anxiety and stress and it strengthens both the body and the mind.

I was totally exhausted in the afternoons and usually too busy to do anything exercise related. And I needed to wake up at 5:30 or 6:30 every morning. So... My first question was something like "When the hell I'm supposed to do yoga? I just don't have the time for that!" Hehe... Does it sound similar to you?

So I decided to wake up every day 15 minutes earlier to do a little yoga routine. At this point I didn't know much about it and only knew some basic exercises. But I was really really convinced it would help me and I desperately wanted to do something nice for my wellbeing.

I woke up every morning 15 minutes earlier to do 5 Sun salutations. It is a very simple routine built up like this:

  • Stand straight with feet hip-wide, breath in deeply and lift the arms to the sky

  • Breathe out and fall down with straight legs, touch the ground (are you kidding? I couldn't even touch my ankles, it was 5:15 in the morning!)

  • Breathe in and raise up half until you reach a flat back

  • Breathe out, fall back, try to reach the ground with your hands

  • Breathe in, plant your palms in a shoulder-wide distance and step back your feet in a plank pose

  • Breathe out, place your whole body slowly down on the ground

  • Breathe in, lift up your upper body to stretch your belly and back

  • Breathe out, go to downward facing dog pose (feet and hands planted in the ground, bottom to the sky)

  • Stay here, try to pedal your feet stretching your legs slightly, gently

  • Breathe in, breath out stepping your feet near your hands

  • Breathe in and stretch your back, lifting the upper body slightly

  • Breathe out, fall down try to touch the ground (it's going surprisingly easier then the first time! oh la la!)

  • Breathe in, rise all the way up, stretch your arms up

  • Breathe out, hands meet at heart in prayer's pose

That's it. It might sound a lot written but it actually takes around 1 minute. So I did this 5 times every morning. I did it really slow and precise, I did it with deep breaths, I was completely alone in the silence and I loved it. Even if I felt sleepy and wanted to climb back in the bed, I did this every single morning.

I did it becaused I realized from the first days on how different my body feels throughout the day. I felt much more flexible and strong, It was not a problem to move quickly or to stand up, sit down often. Do you know this heavy, painful feeling with every move you make? This was gone with only 15 minutes of morning yoga.

When the small routine grew into something bigger

I read so many good things about meditation and sometimes I meditated in the afternoons following a guided meditation on Youtube. I read in several articles and videos how your brain is super sensitive in the mornings and you basically set your mood for the whole day when you wake up. What you pay attention to and what you think of, what you do and make in the first hour after waking up will essentially influence your whole day. Creepy, isn't it? But good news, you can use this to your advantage.

Meditation, breathing techniques

After a couple of months of consistent morning routines and casual afternoon exercises I felt like I needed more. I wanted more. So I started to wake up even earlier to do a meditation or a breathing exercise after my little yoga session. It was somehow the right thing to do. It helped me to keep strength, to feel better, to be stronger, to have confidence.

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Julia Blanka

With the knowledge I gained during my education as a holistic health and nutrition coach and with my genuine passion for holistic wellbeing and skincare I’m on the mission to guide you to your healthiest, most beautiful self.

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