/How to relax
How to relax 2017-09-12T03:28:36+00:00

How to relax and why it keeps us young?

Alexis Hannagan – Yoga Teacher | Coach | Mind Therapist | Kinesiologist
I used to associate relaxation with being lazy, can you connect with this? And I still do catch myself at times, even being a yoga teacher and understanding it is fundamental in leading healthy, long, youthful lives. Relaxation is our natural state, but the world we live in is so fast paced, pressurised and overwhelming, a lot of us are actually living in a state of unease, stress and tension, only feeling relaxed occasionally. This way of being is a recipe for the body to break down, speeding up the ageing process and becoming ill because just like nature, our body has the inner intelligence to heal, repair and regenerate, but only if it is relaxed – in a harmonious state.

So how can we relax? We need to look at the whole picture; into all facets of our self. The mind, Body and Spirit. Below I’ve listed key aspects you can easily incorporate into everyday life from the ongoing Mini Retreats I run in Bali at Ubud Yoga Centre, our next two taking place this December the 24th – 25th and 31st – 1st of January if you feel called to bring in the new year deeply revitalised and connected within.

“Because our minds are so active these days it is really beneficial to meditate with mantras because they powerfully assist in cutting through the negativity and clutter in the mind, creating more peace and relaxation.”

1. Clear your mind

Are you always concerned about things in life? When you look back at when you were very concerned about many things, were you able to get things done and be creative, happy and productive? What is it like if for one moment you take a vacation from the worry. I’m not saying to throw responsibility out the window, but to seriously reflect and see if you can meditate without all the concerns in your mind taking your energy, can you be without any worry and free your mind? How would this feel? What heaviness could you drop from your mind? 

2. Start a meditation practice

Because our minds are so active these days it is really beneficial to meditate with mantras because they powerfully assist in cutting through the negativity and clutter in the mind, creating more peace and relaxation. One of my favourite mantras to chant is the Mul Mantra (youtube it). To start you can simply sit cross legged, close your eyes, look down towards the tip of your nose to help slow your thoughts and listen to the mantra. Eventually you will be able to chant along.

3. Slow your breathing

It really is this simple, but so many people don’t do it, because they are not conscious, they are not even aware they are breathing shallowly. When we breathe shallowly we can easily move into an anxious energetic state. Place your hand on your belly just below the navel and breathe slow, long and deep all the way to the top of the ribs. Focus on slow even breaths.

4. Connect to nature

Mother nature’s energy is calm and re-balances our cells. When we ground into the earth whether swimming,walking bare foot, eating lunch in the park, the energy has a powerful healing effect and re balances the trillions of cells in our body.

5. Avoid all food that doesn’t make you feel good

Cut down specifically on caffeine, soft drink, power drinks, white flour and sugar etc, anything with stimulants or that’s refined will aggravate your nervous system and leave you feeling wired, awake yet very tired.

6. Incorporate harmonious sounds into everyday life

Studies have proven the sounds of birds to be one of the most powerful sounds in healing. Sound is one of the fastest ways we can move into deep relaxation. Become aware of how the music and sounds you expose yourself to impacts the state of your mind, body and soul. Attend a sound healing class, if possible with The Hand Pan. Today I attended a yoga workshop and the teacher played this instrument at the start, I drifted off into a deep sleep in minutes and was extremely calm and relaxed for hours making me feel rejuvenated and more youthful.

Most of all, listen to yourself. Only YOU know what is best. What makes you come alive? Is it reading, cooking, playing basketball, swimming, yoga, walking your dog…? Do this, the simple act of engaging in healthy activities which bring you joy will pull you into the present moment, cultivate positive feelings of love, connection and gratitude, allowing your energy to flow and creating relaxation, radiance and fulfillment. After all, relaxation comes when we engage in activities close to our heart, that we enjoy.

Blessings from Bali,

Alexis x

P.S – Fore more information about myself and our Mini Retreats visit www.alexishannagan.com