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Chase Stress Away and Pursue Normal

By Sandy Schroeder

The last year has deepened feelings of stress for many of us, but now as we look ahead we really need to reduce that stress load. The calmer and more focused we are, the easier it will be to head back to normal. So how do we minimize stress? 

WellAndGood.com says eight weeks of yoga can make a definite change in stress levels for you. Look for classes near you and talk with an instructor about stress and any other issues that you have.  You may want to observe a class and then show up with your mat ready to go. 

How It Works 

When I started yoga classes, I was up to my ears in stress. My job had turned into a stress mill, going from one that was creative and satisfying to one that was demanding and unrewarding.  

When I settled onto a yoga mat for the first time, I could almost feel the anxiety and stress lifting. Within two weeks my yoga class had become my refuge and my whole attitude about my job had changed. Within two months I had found a new job and was moving on with my life. My new attitude made the difference in chasing stress away. 

Researchers have studied the relationship between yoga and brain health. Focusing on five different studies, they found yoga newcomers who did one class a week for 10 to 24 weeks experienced a major attitude shift after eight weeks. 

As you try it, you find the first class or two to be challenging, but don't give up. All of the good stuff will show up and make it worthwhile. 

Wayne State University researchers discovered eight weeks of yoga changed the response of the stress hormone, cortisol resulting in more focused attention with clearer reactions in task switching, decision making, and attention reactions on the job. 

They also say yoga can help you reduce anxiety and depression with a calmer more positive attitude.  Yoga also tones the body, improves posture and balance, and teaches you to use your breath to relax. You may want to expand your class routines with early morning poses and late evening sessions to feel better and sleep better.

I found it to be a natural path that just flows on ahead. Years later, settling onto my yoga mat is one of my favorite ways to create calmness in my life.   

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Brea, Calif. 

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