Normally, the body responds to a stressful condition through a “fight of flight” reaction. Especially during panic attacks, the mind goes beyond rational and logical thinking and dramatic physical and physiological body changes occur.The mind and body should have a relaxation response after the sudden surge of anxiety or panic attack. If the person is not able to relax, the body continues to suffer from the symptoms of anxiety and finds it hard to bring back the systems to its normal functions, causing health problems in both physiological and emotional aspect.
At work, we all get stressed for various reasons. It could be the heavy workload assigned to us, an argument with a colleague, or a stern and strict boss. There are ways to beat the pressure in the office. Meditation and breathing exercises are very effective in combating negative stress.Meditation is a form of healing and deep relaxation. Yoga is a form of meditation where the mind achieves a state of inner relaxation. Let us find out how to apply simple meditation practice and breathing exercise in our day-to-day office work activities.
Quieting the Mind
Practicing how to quiet the mind is a form of meditation technique. In the workplace, you will encounter different issues and problems with your colleagues and the work itself. The mind is disrupted, filled with pessimistic thoughts. Sometimes, you even do a negative “self-talk”. These trigger feelings of anxiety and reinforce it.Eventually, it will be exhausting and will wear you down. The mind should be controlled from too much negative thinking and unconstructive inner dialogue. You can choose any time of the day to quiet the mind. Or, you can do so when you are feeling stressed and anxious.
In your workplace, find a comfortable location during your break where you can be alone, away from distraction. If you prefer to stay in your cubicle or at your desk, that would be fine as long as you spare a few minutes to concentrate on your meditation.One key element in quieting the mind is concentration. The goal should be to empty the mind and free it from negativities. Start thinking of something or someone that makes you smile. And if you have captured that thought, focus on it. Do not entertain any other thoughts and feelings as it will only disrupt the concentration. After the exercise, you should feel calmer and more relaxed.
Guided imagery is another form of relaxation technique that is a variation of traditional meditation. This is otherwise called visualization where the mind imagines a scenario or a situation that makes it feel calm and at peace, slowly letting go of body tension and stress. When doing guided imagery, make use of the different sense organs of the body. You can do this in the office during your lunch break, as it may require several minutes to complete the activity. It is best close the eyes and let go of any worries and inhibition. You can choose any setting that makes you feel comfortable—a beach scenario, scene in the forest, a happy childhood memory, or a romantic moment with your loved one. Concentrate on the scenario and vividly picture yourself on it.
Deep Breathing Exercise
A very important realization we need to know is that deep breathing is a simple but a powerful relaxation technique and the basic step in all relaxation exercises. In whatever situation you are in and wherever you are, whenever stress levels are rising, deep breathing exercise is the quickest you can rely on to calm your state of mind. Proper breathing uses the abdomen and not the chest, which most of us wrongly do. The use of the abdomen allows more inhale of oxygen and facilitates normal breathing.
You can do deep breathing exercise at your office desk anytime you feel stressed. You have to be seated comfortably with the back leaning on the chair and do not slouch. Place one hand on the chest and the other on the stomach. Remember to breathe in slowly and deeply through the nose, feeling the abdominal muscles tighten. The stomach should move as you inhale. Then exhale slowly through the mouth, feeling the abdominal muscles contract. Do this repeatedly and slowly for several counts.