fbpx

Blog

Stop stressing, start relaxing (a how to guide)

by | Oct 20, 2015 | Uncategorized

A week ago I was fortunate enough to attend the Balancing the Busy conference in Bangalow, hosted by the lovely Jody Vassallo.  Two of the guest teachers on A Daily Dose of BlissRachel Zinman and Caroline Cowley were speaking, along with Dr Libby Weaver, an internationally acclaimed nutritional biochemist, author and speaker.

Dr Libby spoke about nutrition, the autonomic nervous system, the Rushing Women’s Syndrome, exercise, caffeine, love and the serenity prayer, but said that her number one health tip was to simply extend the exhalation.

When we extend the out breath, the parasympathetic branch of the nervous system (PNS) kicks in. The PNS is otherwise known as the ‘rest, digest and repair’ response, and is vital for our health, healing and happiness.  Conversely, the sympathetic nervous system (SNS) is required to save us from life threatening danger, and is otherwise known as the ‘fight, flight or freeze’ response.

Our nervous system was built for us to only use the SNS if our life is in danger, but these days, we all rush around with such stress and urgency, that our bodies are fooled into thinking that our life is actually being threatened.  As a result our body reduces it’s resources dedicated to healing, digestion, relaxation and libido, and instead goes about trying to save our life by increasing resources to get away from the perceived threat.

Our breath is a key way that we can move from sympathetic to parasympathetic dominance.  Our in breath is associated with SNS dominance, and the out breath with PNS dominance.  So extending the exhalation can help us to move out of the ‘fight, flight or freeze’ response, and into the ‘rest, digest and repair’ response.

Extending the exhalation is so simple.  We can practice it anywhere, it takes very little time, it doesn’t require any special equipment, and best of all, it’s  free!

The Extended Exhalation Breath is a practice I teach regularly in my yoga classes, in my counselling room and it’s one of the practices in my online course A Daily Dose of Bliss.

Would you like to give it a try?

Join me in the shala. Find yourself a comfortable position and press play…..

I personally love this practice at night time.  I practice it lying in bed, and it helps me to drift off to sleep (hint: it’s almost impossible to get to sleep when the sympathetic nervous system is dominant).

Take a few minutes to try this practice, then leave me a comment below about how you found it.  I’d love to hear about how it was for you.

Happy breathing,

3 Comments

  1. Elise

    Hi Lauren,

    Enjoyed your video – beautiful.

    Reply
    • Dr Lauren Tober

      Hi Elise! I’m so glad you did! Thanks for watching 🙂

      Reply
  2. Sonja

    Hi Lauren,

    Loved the little break in the middle of my busy day 🙂

    Blessings,
    Sonja

    Reply

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

ACCESS THE INNER WISDOM LIBRARY

Free meditations, eBooks + more

You have Successfully Subscribed!

FREE WEBINAR

Meditation webinar

NEXT TRAINING

Mental Health Aware Yoga

WANT MORE LIKE THIS IN YOUR INBOX?

Mental Health and COVID-19

Mental Health and COVID-19

  With much of the world going into lock down as a result of COVID-19, one of the biggest global health risks we’re facing right now is mental illness. Loneliness, as a result of social distancing, and stress as a result of the financial implications of lock down and health fears, are very...

read more
Ahiṁsā (non-violence)

Ahiṁsā (non-violence)

  Let's dive into the Yoga Sūtras together. Patañjali’s Yoga Sūtras are an ancient yogic text, and a practical guide to self-understanding and enlightenment (as we saw in this article).  They outline eight limbs for achieving the goal of yoga, including the yamas, niyamas, āsana, prāṇāyāma,...

read more
Eight Limbs of Yoga

Eight Limbs of Yoga

It is thought that Patañjali was an ancient sage who wrote down the vedic knowledge of the time into sūtras, so they could be handed down orally from teacher to student. These sūtras comprise of a series of experiments or practices that are designed to realise the teachings of Sāṅkhya, teachings...

read more

Sign up to stay in touch +
access the digital library

 free meditations, eBooks + more for wholehearted living

WANT MORE LIKE THIS IN YOUR INBOX?

WANT MORE LIKE THIS IN YOUR INBOX?

Access meditations, eBooks and more
in the Inner Wisdom Library.

It's yours.  For free.

Thanks

LET'S GET STARTED

LET'S GET STARTED

Sign up to my growing collection of meditations, eBooks and more
in the Inner Wisdom Library

It's yours. For free.

Thank you

WANT TO BE THE FIRST TO HEAR?

WANT TO BE THE FIRST TO HEAR?

Leave your details and you'll be ther FIRST to hear when registration opens

for this online 6 week iRest Yoga Nidra course

Thank you