Headache

Every detail so perfect, a fairytale you’ve been dreaming about since the first time you slipped into your mother’s big-girl heels. But now, as the clock ticks and the pressure squeezes in from all sides, you’d like to smash the glass slipper and finish off a whole bottle of champagne by yourself.

Author and longevity coach, Richard E. Bush, says we can trigger calm as much as we trigger anxiousness. “Humans are wired like simple machines, flip a switch and you get a response,” he says. “To manage your anxiety for a stressful event like a wedding, you want to create relaxation.” Bush warns stress encourages unwanted weight gain,
too, and recommends you create a serene, and joyous mood. Here’s how.

Richard E. Bush is the author of Growing Ageless: The Simple Art of Health and Longevity. A former stressed-out pilot, his book details ways to enhance longevity through relaxation, movement, detoxifying your life and listening to your body. We asked him what could help brides reduce their anxiety as they plan their weddings. Here are his tips:

1BREATHE YOUR NATURAL RHYTHM:

Physical movements can act as light switches and cue your body to relax.

TRY THIS: Sit quietly in one spot and listen as you breathe in and out through your nose. Do this without force or intention. You’ll begin to tap directly into the central nervous system. This calms you from head to toe.

2BEDROOM EYES:

Relax your eyes, it’s very important. If your eyes are fixed or tense, the pressure you are feeling intensifies.

TRY THIS: Place your index fingers together in front of your nose, about eight inches. Focus on them as if you are trying to solve a problem. Keep your eyes looking straight ahead, separate your fingers away from each other until they disappear from sight. For a less subtle exercise, allow your eyelids to be very heavy but not fully closed, just don’t fall asleep before finishing this article.

3MIND THE CORNERS OF YOUR MOUTH:

A smile works to change your emotional state. You can literally give yourself a smile, because people give you one in return for yours. Studies show that the physical act of smiling, by itself, generates a good feeling.

TRY THIS: Notice the profound difference between a sad face and a smile. No matter your mood, your body will respond to a turned-up mouth.

4HOLY TRINITY:

When you put it all together, you’re well put together.

TRY THIS: Bring 1,2, and 3 together in a day long practice: relax your eyes, smile, and listen to your breath. Repeat this throughout every day until it becomes a habit.

5STRESS WEIGHT:

Relax, don’t worry and treat your stomach gently. In the West we say, “I worried myself sick,” which means we overate or couldn’t eat at all. Traditional Chinese medicine teaches that worry and excess thinking harm digestion. The irony is that we are taught to obsess about diet and nutrition for the sake of our health, when in fact, we are making ourselves sick.

TRY THIS: The first rule on eating and weight management is to think and worry less.

6 NO ICE PLEASE:

Avoid drinking iced beverages, particularly with your meal. The stomach must heat-up to 100 degrees to digest food. Iced drinks will both weaken your digestion and make you eat more than you need. If you must cool down, suck on some ice, preferably between meals.

7FAKE IT TILL YOU MAKE IT:

Mood-enhancing switches are wired into every one of us. Activate yours now.

TRY THIS: Close your eyes, now smile.

8ROLL YOUR EYES:

TRY THIS: With #7 in place, gently roll your eyes toward the crown of your head. Tilt your head back then repeatedly raise your brow as if you are trying to lift your mood. With your eyes still closed, do a head scan for dark, tense areas. Continue this until your mood lightens and you begin to feel elated.

9TEARS OF RELEASE:

If you are really stressed, these exercises can make you cry because you are releasing the pent-up anxiety. Tears are just a symptom of the hard-wired mechanisms designed to help you let go.

10PRE-VISUALIZE YOUR CALM:

Stressful event prep can start by imagining utter catastrophe, an epic disaster. While you are smiling and relaxed and watching the world go to hell in your mind, you will face your fears and become fully engaged in the joy of the process.

By Sondra Sneed

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