The majority of us have no idea how much tension we hold within our body. Even without exercise and sports, our muscles are constantly stimulated, either through the stresses of modern life or from taking on the emotional energy of others. All of which impacts our emotional wellbeing.
Even the TV programs we watch of an evening for entertainment can have an effect of firing up the mind which then stimulates the muscles, further tensing them.
Any painful emotions, whether our own or those we pick up from others, are stored within the muscles which leads to greater muscle fatigue and stress.
When our muscles are constantly contracted and stressed they fuel the sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight).
Stressed Muscles Leads to a Stressed Empath Mind!
Did you know even now, whilst reading this, you are holding tension somewhere in your body?
If you take your awareness to your face you may notice that your forehead, jaw or eyes are not relaxed. If you travel further into the body you may find your shoulders hunched or your wrists extended back, your legs, hips or back might be in an awkward or unnatural position, all creating pressure in the muscles and joints. But, until this was pointed out, you were unaware you were holding any tension.
We could go through the entire body, but I think it’s safe to say you will be unwittingly holding tension somewhere. Not only is this depleting the body of vital energy that most can ill-afford to lose but it causes many other problems: It is prematurely ageing, it raises blood pressure, lowers the immune system and unnecessarily heightens Empath stress.
What To Do About It
Relax! In yoga, it is known that the relaxation, at the end of a class, is the most beneficial part of the practice. Not only is it time for the body to rest but it’s the time the muscles can let go of any tension they are holding.
One of the best and easiest ways to get the muscles to relax and soften is to tense them first.
By training the muscles to soften and loosen, through relaxation, it switches on the parasympathetic nervous system. This in turn slows the breathing, lowers blood pressure, initiates deep relaxation of body and mind, and allows healing to occur.
Here are some more of the benefits:
Muscle Relaxation Benefits
- Reduces fatigue
- Lowers blood pressure
- Boosts immune system
- Induces restful sleep
- Allows for muscle regeneration
- Switches on parasympathetic nervous system
- Promotes mind stillness
- Aides in general well-being.
Here’s a quick and easy relaxation technique:
Muscle relaxation technique:
- Lie on the floor or a bed (for anyone suffering back problems: a bolster or cushion under knees is helpful).
- Starting at the feet, tense the both feet at the same time for five to ten seconds, then release.
- Work up through legs, torso, arms, shoulders, head and face, tensing and relaxing each body part in turn (If time is short, you could tense the lower part of body first, then the upper half, finishing on the face.).
- When you’ve tensed each body part, focus on the whole body and allow it to relax and go floppy. Feel it melting into the floor and let go.
- Close your eyes and stay for a while in this deep state of relaxation.
Not only does the above exercise promote relaxation but it also aids in stilling the mind. Relaxation can be done at any time of day but it is great to do at bedtime or after exercise.
If, as an Empath, you suffer any kind of stress conditions or chronic fatigue, doing full-body muscle tensing and relaxation is a great help to your overall well-being.
Hope this helps on your journey…
Until next time
©Diane Kathrine at Empaths Empowered
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