February 6, 2023
A neuroscientist teaches how to deal with stress and anxiety in just 3 exercises

A neuroscientist teaches how to deal with stress and anxiety in just 3 exercises

condensed image of anxiety It tends to activate the so-called sympathetic nervous system, which corresponds to a network of nerves responsible for triggering an immediate response. This could be fighting or fleeing from the situation they are in, upon realizing danger, for example.

However, on several occasions this type of defense can be harmful, creating uncomfortable situations. As an example, we can cite a job interview, where, when trying to impress a future employer, the candidate is unsuccessful because he is too nervous.

Read more: These simple habits will help you reduce stress

Although it doesn’t seem like it sometimes, you may have more strength than you realize. In this article, we will list 3 easy exercises to relieve these sensations, which a neuroscientist recently shared.

Exercises to deal with anxiety and stress

The first exercise consists of a conscious sigh, for which you need to sit comfortably. It should be practiced when the first symptoms of a crisis are noticed, such as increased heart rate, tension in the shoulders, among others.

First, take a long, deep breath in through your nose for about 5 seconds and hold for a while. Then do another inhalation, this time faster, and hold for 3 seconds. Next, exhale slowly through your mouth for an average of six seconds. It is recommended to repeat this course three times.

The second stage of the process consists of a method known as the “half-salamander”, in which it consists of moving the eyes without moving the head, similar to a salamander behavior from this animal.

To begin, sit in a comfortable position with your head facing forward. After that, make eye movements without moving your head. Then, tilt your head toward your shoulder and hold for about 30 to 60 seconds.

After a while, return your head to a normal position and look forward again, repeating the movement for the other side of the body. This method tends to stimulate the so-called vagus nerves, which are responsible for controlling heart rate and creating a sense of relaxation.

The last exercise is also the most complex of the three, as it involves longer movements. You will need to kneel down with your head down. Then look to the left but without moving your head in this motion. After that, tilt your head to the left and let the spine be on the same side.

Hold this position for 30 to 60 seconds, returning your head and body to center after that time. Repeat the same movements for the other side of the body.

Neuroscientist Dr. Tara Swart Pepper, MD, MD, MIT Sloan Professor, and host of the podcast “Reinvent Yourself with Dr. Tara.”