Let's talk stress + skin health...what's the connection?!
When our body is stressed out it produces a cocktail of hormones that aren't healthy for prolonged periods. Recent studies have shown that chronic stress can exacerbate skin issues, cause skin inflammation and premature aging of healthy skin cells. The obvious solution to this is reducing stress, but how in a society where we are all so busy?!
One of our favorite stress-busting techniques to get your mind to stop racing and your body to calm down is by doing breath-work and having a mindfulness practice (meditation).
There are many different mindfulness practices out there and there is no wrong way of practicing, as long as it's working for you. I encourage you to explore and find the medium that supports you best. This could include a meditation app, taking a mediation class, certain types of yoga etc. The following routine is my absolute favorite and all you need is 10 minutes a day. Challenge yourself to commit to it for 30 days straight and notice how you feel.
10 minute meditation steps:
1. Find a quiet relaxing space where you can sit comfortably in a chair or sit leaning against a wall.
2. Start breathing deeply for 5 slow, deep breaths. In through your nose and out through your mouth.
3. Once you have completed these 5 breaths check in with yourself and notice how your physical body is feeling? Are you noticing any parts of your body that feel more tense? Is your breath fluid or is it hitchy? No judgement, just take notice. Then move on to your mind...are your thoughts racing, are you stuck on a particular frustration or do you feel calm? Again, not judging or trying to change your thoughts, just taking note of them.
4. Now bring your attention back to your breathing. Going with your body's natural breath rhythm, start counting each breath....so inhale would be 1, exhale would be 2, the next inhale would be 3 and so on. Do this for the remainder of your 10 minute practice. You might notice that other thoughts come up, that's totally okay and normal. Acknowledge them and then go back to counting your breaths.
5. After 10 minutes notice how you feel! How does your body feel? Are you more relaxed and is your mind more clear?
6. Congratulations you just completed a mindfulness practice! It sounds so simple it almost feels silly but this practice will change your life if you commit to it.
If we can learn to calm our minds, it has a cascading positive affect on our mental health and physical body and yes that includes the skin! Will you commit to a mindfulness practice for just 10 minutes a day for the next 30 days with me?