Stress can often make you focus on your perceived weaknesses and flaws. When you’re feeling stressed or overwhelmed, it’s common to end up criticising and blaming yourself. A way of building up our resilience to stress is to learn to recognise your negative thought patterns and actively work to refocus your mind. In this exercise, we will use the technique of positive self-talk. I will help you to identify some of your key personal qualities and strengths. All you need for this exercise is a pen and paper.
2. How to Switch off the Mind
Sleep is when our body recovers and does the majority of our emotional processing. However when we are stressed, it is often very difficult to fall asleep. Stress and anxiety cause us to feel physically tense and our minds may race with thoughts and worries. In this session, Dr. Catherine will lead you through a guided Imagery exercise to switch off the mind.
3. Release Tension in the Body
One of the physical signs of stress is muscular tension throughout the body or in specific areas like the neck, shoulders, back and head. In this session Dr. Catherine will guide you through a Progressive Muscle Relaxation technique which will enable you to release tension in the body so that you can begin to feel more calm and relaxed.This exercise can be done sitting in a comfortable chair, at any point during the day, but it’s even better to do lying down, especially in bed at night.
4. Peaceful Mind Visualization
Visualization is an effective technique for managing both stress and anxiety. With practice, this technique can enable you to achieve a sense of relaxation in just a few minutes - perfect for when you’ve had a busy stressful day. In this session, Dr. Catherine will guide you through a visualization where you can imagine yourself in a peaceful and safe environment, somewhere that makes you feel calm, happy and relaxed. The more you practice this exercise, the more naturally you will be able to imagine yourself in your peaceful place, and the greater the relaxation effect will be.
5. Mindful Body Relaxation
When we are feeling very stressed, it’s easy to feel ‘stuck in our head’ and disconnected from our physical selves. In this session Dr. Catherine will guide you through a mindful body scan. This is a practice that aims to increase your awareness of the whole of your body to help you to feel calmer, more centred and grounded. You can do this any time of day, but you might like to try it when you’re lying in bed at night, or upon waking in the morning. Be sure to wear comfortable clothing.
6. Deep Breathing For Relaxation
To effectively combat stress, we need to elicit the relaxation response. This is a physical state of deep rest which involves a number of physical changes in the body - your blood pressure decreases, your breathing slows down, your metabolism decreases, your heart rate slows down and your muscles relax. In this session Dr. Catherine will guide you through a simple deep breathing technique.
7. One Minute Mindfulness - Visualization
Feeling tense and overwhelmed? Take one minute out of your busy day and join Dr Catherine for a soothing 'peaceful place' visualization. This short session will allow you to let go of any thoughts and feelings that are causing you to worry or experience anxiety today.
8. Welcome to Simple Stress Management
So many of us are walking around feeling more stressed and anxious. The good news is, there are a number of ways that we can reduce stress in our daily life. In this series, Clinical Psychologist and Author, Dr Catherine Wilkholm, explains simple effective ways in which you can live a healthier and happier life through simple stress management practices. With the right tools, techniques and daily healthy habits you can learn to manage the effects of stress on your physical and mental state.
9. Daily Habits for Stress Relief
In order to make long-term change, we need to commit to daily practices that will allow us to clear our minds, feel more in control, and adopt a more positive, capable outlook.Changing our patterns of behavior can feel challenging at first but there are a few ways you can make it easier. In this session, Dr. Catherine will discuss how we can better manage stress long-term by learning to become more decisive, streamlining our schedules, decluttering our environments and becoming more focused on our physical health and wellbeing. The session will conclude with a guided 'Peaceful Place' visualization that you can practice whenever you start to feel anxious or tense.