Everyone’s stressed out. And I’m willing to bet good money that until now, you’ve probably managed to muscle your way through it. You put on a strong, brave face, right?
I get it… I’ve got plenty of clients who do that daily.
Heck, I’ve used that method myself for many years in the past.
But it really doesn’t help long-term… all it really does is run up a metaphorical loan made of anger, resentment, and frustration that eventually comes due.
And we’re often never prepared for when that happens.
It’s usually at the most inconvenient time when you feel like your body and health are betraying you.
Slowly, you lose your ability to be resilient.
The smallest things set you off or overwhelm you.
You can’t make decisions, and you live moment to moment feeling like everything is getting away from you.
I’ll tell you this much from my own personal experience with stress as well as that working with clients in my clinical nutrition practice… no one escapes the Stress Landslide unscathed.
There are no pills to fix your stress problem (that affect your gut & skin)
And if your idea of trying to outrun it is a pill, allow me to be the first to tell you that it’s not the best fix.
See – digestive, fatigue, autoimmune, and skin issues require something more potent.
For the record, that something doesn’t come in the shape of a capsule nor a powder you can add to your morning protein shake routine.
It a prescription that requires effort and commitment on your part.
And it’s one of the least followed recommendations that I (and my fellow practitioners) give.
I’d tell you to meditate, but for most people… that just seems like too big of a commitment.
Then I’ll suggest mindfulness practices… and you’ll tell me that you feel like that’s too “woo-woo”.
So lastly I come to my favorite option → Breathing practices.
“Two minutes a day. That’s all I’m asking. Can you do that?”
“Um… isn’t there a supplement that I could take? I just feel like I’d be more compliant with that and it’s just easier.”
I totally get that doing new things is uncomfortable. But making integrative changes doesn’t just mean swapping pharmaceutical pills for those packed with amino acids or herbs.
It amazes me the lengths people will go to eliminate all sorts of foods from their diets and buy expensive programs to solve their health problems.
But they are most resistant to spending two minutes each day breathing even though I’d argue that breathing exercises, meditation, and even mindfulness practices can have just as strong of an effect as a pill.
It has been proven time and again the serious, detrimental effect that stress has on your health, gut, skin, energy, immunity, and beyond.
You literally have a second brain in your gut thanks to the interconnection of gut to brain tissue via the vagus nerve.
And that’s why I contend that if you put aside just two minutes each day to focus on your breath, you’ll realize that you can manage your stress better, improve your resiliency, and decrease your symptoms and flares.
Your breath is directly connected to your state of mind… and if you don’t believe me, do you ever recall taking deep, slow breaths when you’re super stressed or panicked?
Nope… you’re breathing is short, fast, and rushed which is all part of the fight or flight mechanism.
That’s why spending two minutes each day practicing breathing exercises to reduce stress matters.
Breathing Exercises To Reduce Stress For Gut & Skin Health
My three big reasons why I believe you should start using breathing exercises every day:
1. Breathing as a means to calm stress levels becomes routine when you practice it daily.
2. You’ll discover areas of your body that you hold tension you weren’t even aware of and can start releasing.
3. You’re carving out valuable real estate in your day to relax and check in with yourself.
This is important because while doing nice things for yourself monthly — like going for a massage — is certainly helpful, it will not make up for the two minutes daily breathing that you’re NOT doing.
And if you think about it for a minute… why don’t you have two minutes a day to do this? If you’re committed as heck to doing what it takes to resolve your health… why haven’t you jumped on board yet?
I’m going to share my favorite breathing practices that I teach my clients that include the 4-7-8 breath, belly breathing, and the 5-count breath. (The video tutorials are below!!)
None of them are rocket science and they do not have anything to do with religion. Instead, they offer you a moment of peace and calm. An opportunity to tell your mind as well as your body that you are safe and can relax.
I’ve used these breathing exercises personally when I’ve been under excessive amounts of stress or have experienced a sense of panic triggered by PTSD from when I lived in New York City during 9/11. So I know the power that a simple two minutes breathing practice to reduce stress can have.
I hope that, if anything, you take a moment to consider why something so powerful, yet free seems to be the most overlooked self-care practice you can do. You are more than worth the two minutes this costs especially considering the massive benefits it can yield that no pill, supplement, or food can honestly replicate.
If you’ve started a breathing or meditation practice, I’d love to hear more about how you got started and what type of practice you do along with any benefits you’ve personally experienced. Sharing what’s helped you is always the best way to encourage and inspire others to give something new like this a try!
And when you give one of these breathing practices a try, I’d equally love to know how you felt afterward, and if you’d keep it up!
Alright… thanks for tuning in and I look forward to our next chat!