Today’s stress is very different from what we used to think. Stress no longer revolves around a single event such as trauma, a career switch, or major life events.
Today’s stress is ongoing as it is the wear and tear of our daily lives. Do you feel like you still feel lethargic even after a spa or vacation? Yes, if we do not address the root cause of stress, our brain will soon accustom itself to the activities that were once associated with stress, and in the long run, no amount of sleep, hot baths, or massages will help.
So, do you know that research has shown that emotions play a crucial role in our daily lives, and positive emotions can help us break the stress cycle? The good news is that there are ways such as HeartMath techniques that help us replace old stress responses by drawing on positive emotions to new patterns and more productive attitudes (HeartMath, 2022). It also helps us regulate our heart's rhythmic patterns from erratic (stress) to smooth, wave-like patterns (calmness).
Here are 3 reasons why HeartMath can help you break free from the stress cycle:
1. HeartMath Improves Your Ability To Stay Calm
When our heart is coherent, it sends a smooth and coherent signal to the brain, which aligns all of our systems, allowing us to feel calm and collected. It helps us maintain our cool and improve our ability to focus when there is too much activity around us or too much information coming in.
2. HeartMath Helps You To Make Better Decisions
In the long run, practising coherence eliminates mental fog and creates more clarity in decision-making. Instead of feeling overwhelmed by the situation, it helps us focus on things that matter, see things from a different perspective or find alternative solutions to reach our goals.
3. HeartMath Helps To Build Your Emotional Resilience
HeartMath helps you to recover, prepare, and adapt to challenges. With strong emotional resilience, we not only bounce back faster, but we also have more ability to avoid falling back into similar situations. For instance, the familiar feeling of being stuck, or feelings of helplessness. By building our resilience, we can self-regulate, perform better, and hold space for others.
So, now that we know the benefits of HeartMath, here are 2 techniques you can try on your own:
1. The Quick Coherence® Technique (HeartMath, 2022)
Heart focus: Shift your attention to the area of the heart and breathe slowly and deeply.
Heart breathing: Keep your focus on the heart by gently breathing – five seconds in and five seconds out – through your heart. Do this two or three times before moving to the next step.
Heart feeling: Activate and sustain genuine feelings of appreciation or care for someone or something in your life. Focus on the good heart feeling as you continue to breathe through the area of your heart.
2. The ‘Notice and Ease’ Technique (HeartMath, 2011)
Step 1: Notice and recognise your feelings. This brings your mind back into the present moment, to be in touch with your feelings.
Step 2: Try to put a name to that feeling. (You should be honest with yourself as this helps you slow down any racing emotions.)
Step 3: While focusing on the heart, visualise negative feelings slowly easing out of the body
I'd highly encourage you to try these techniques. They work beautifully for many clients (including myself!). And, if you need more personalized coaching on this, I am pleased to share that I am now offering the HeartMath Personal Resilience Advantage coaching programme! In this personalised 4-session programme, you can expect practical yet easy-to-learn self-regulation tools, and resilience-building practices approved by the HeartMath Institute. Through this coaching programme, you will also experience the immediate benefits of bringing more ease and balance into your life — at home, at work, in a meeting, while driving, anywhere or anytime you feel the need to de-stress. Click HERE to find out more!
With love & empowerment,
Chapter 02: Resilience, stress and emotions. HeartMath Institute. (n.d.). Retrieved June 21, 2022, from https://www.heartmath.org/research/science-of-the-heart/resilience-stress-and-emotions/
HeartMath. (2011, May 4). HeartMath offers stress reduction techniques - heartmath: Blog. HeartMath. Retrieved June 21, 2022, from https://www.heartmath.com/blog/health-and-wellness/heartmath-offers-stress-reduction-techniques/
HeartMath Institute. (2022). What Is Personal Heart Coherence & How Can It Help Us Manage Stress? YouTube. Retrieved June 21, 2022, from https://youtu.be/u_qJE5O_AI4.
Inside stressing out: What works and what doesn't in the face of stress. HeartMath. (2022, January 24). Retrieved June 21, 2022, from https://www.heartmath.com/press-room/inside-stressing-out-what-works-and-what-doesnt-in-the-face-of-stress/