• Chris

Calming the Nervous System

Updated: May 25, 2021

In this day and age, the vast majority of us are living in a state of acceleration. We speed through the week with the aid of caffeine or other stimulants to help us get through the day. Along with our busy work life, we still have to find time and energy to tend to our families, friends, activities and hobbies. This way of living has been a norm for most of us dating back since teenage hood. We've adopted this "go go go" mentality, that we're unable to ease down our pace when the times comes. By the time the weekend arrives, a lot of us are still in hyper drive, with a very small window for rest. So depending on our lifestyle, we rarely get the chance to fully process our overall well being. Here are some tips that I find have benefited me over the years.

Substituting Coffee for Tea

This may be a big transition for some to make, however I guarantee that once this is put into practice, you'll feel much better on a long term basis. My consumption of coffee started a while back during my time working at a call center. There was a Tim Horton's shop across the street, the price for coffee was cheap and it gave me that extra jolt that I needed to kill off those last 5 hours of my shift. The main problem was of course not being able to rest when it came to down time. This caffeine addiction continued throughout the years, and I noticed that the "boost" I would get was gradually tapering away over a period of time. So much to the point of lasting a mere 10-15 minutes, followed by a complete crash in energy and fatigue. This was when I made the conscious choice to wean off the caffeine, by substituting coffee with another hot beverage. Using decaffeinated tea as a substitute not only regulated my energy levels back into balance, but it served as a calming agent, helped with digestion and stomach cramps, and was an overall aid to relaxing the nervous system which had been fried from over stimulation of caffeine. Occasionally tiredness will still set in throughout due to lack off sleep. However the difference now is that there's no longer that draining sense of fatigue, but more of a lighter more natural sleepiness.

Magnesium Citrate

Another way of calming your nervous system is through the supplementation of vitamins such as Magnesium. Magnesium is known to have a calming sedative effect on the nervous system, which can be beneficial for individuals who are in a chronically stressful state. For those who have trouble with sleep, magnesium can aid as a sedative support for falling asleep and better overall sleep quality. Generally, magnesium is a safe and essential supplement to take, but be sure to check with a health care professional to confirm which supplementation is right for you.

Cold Showers

My experience with cold showers has always been positive, and the benefits you receive is not a myth. I'm the type of person who can't function if I'm cold, so embarking on this new lifestyle change was a challenge at first. When it comes to cold showers, my first suggestion would be to crawl before you walk. Start at a comfortable temperature, and gradually turn it down lower. What your doing is training your body to undergo discomfort by remaining centered and getting accustom to the frigged temperature. Some of the benefits of cold showers include, sharpened focus and alertness, better and healthier looking skin and hair, weight loss, sped up recovery for muscle soreness, decreased inflammation in the body and nervous system which reduces stress levels, improved immunity and blood flow, and of course strengthened will power.

Grounding/ Breathing Techniques

As I mentioned previously, society has a hard time winding down and learning to relax the body and mind. We often get caught up in everyday situations that lead us to overthink, over analyze and over identify with scenarios that take place, which leads to all types of unnecessary stresses and health problems. Our breathing is what keeps us alive, grounded and allows us to think and function accordingly. Breathing is the most important aspect when it comes to exercise or any type of physical activity. Many of us go about our day with very shallow breathing. The goal of grounding techniques is to reconnect with our bodies, by allowing our breathing to go deeper into the stomach. Practice taking a deep breath in for 4 seconds, and allow your stomach and lungs to fully expand. Then, hold your breath for another 4 seconds and release by exhaling for another 4 seconds. Repeat this for as many times as you'd like. By deepening our breathing patterns we're allowing for more oxygenated blood to circulate in our body. This in turn promotes better brain and heart functioning, which is a vital part of our physiology. It also helps to alleviate migraines and headaches due to the released tension in the upper body, which reduces stress and anxiety, and allows clearer thinking and decision making. Breathing and grounding techniques should be an essential part of everyone's daily routine, and should be practiced with patience and consistency.

14 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All