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Simple Ways to Feel Better Right Now

"Être Bien Dans Sa Peau” – A popular French expression that means "to feel good in one's skin"

These suggestions for feeling better in the moment could easily be integrated into your daily routine. Habits such as these will set your mind and body up for success and set the stage for you to feel better NOW!


Tip #1 : Elevate Your Legs

This is probably my favorite feel better hack. A teacher of mine gave me this advice one day when I was feeling tired. She said, "lay on the floor with your bottom against the wall, elevate your legs for 15 minutes and it will be the equivalent to a 2 hour nap." This practice, and inversions in general, help the flow of blood and lymph, therefore is both energizing to our bodies and calming to our nervous systems. Other desirable benefits are: reduces fluid retention, relieves pressure in our legs and feet, improves digestion by releasing trapped fluid in our belly, slows breathing bc more space is created in our diaphragm to take a deep breath, and even improves posture because it calms shoulder tension.


Tip #2: Dry Brush

This is an ancient practice that is becoming a staple in many morning and evening routines. And for good reason. This gentle, yet stimulating practice is highly effective for the lymph system and helps our natural detoxification process. This should be done on dry skin with a brush that has firm but not coarse bristles. Brush towards your heart in long sweeping strokes, beginning at the bottom of your feet, moving up the legs, hips, torso, chest and arms. You want to spend a little more time on areas that have more lymph nodes such as behind the knees and armpits. The whole process should only take about 5 minutes and is perfect to do right before you shower.

Tip #3: Grounding/Earthing/Forest Bathing

Nature is incredibly restorative! Step outside and take a look around. Notice the subtleties, the things you may not notice when rushing off to work. Become aware of how green the leaves are on a tree, the deep brown of the roots, the dew on the grass, the shape of the clouds. Listen...do you hear birds? Cars? Take a deep breath...make a mental note of the air. Is rain coming? Do you feel hot and muggy or cool and crisp? Next, take off your shoes, stand on the grass, close your eyes, breathe. This is called grounding (you may also hear it referred to as earthing or forest bathing). There is actual science behind this practice. Research shows grounding naturally boosts serotonin and energy while simultaneously reducing stress. Negative ions from the ground attract the harmful positive ions in our body and pull them down, reducing the number of airborne toxins we have accumulated. And it doesn't take long, even 5 minutes of this practice is beneficial. So, after reading this blog post, turn off your phone, take off your shoes and head outside!


Tip #4: Hot Herbal Tea

I don't know if there is anything more comforting than a cup of hot tea. Your favorite mug, a kettle of boiling water and a tea bag filled with herbs of your choice. Not only do you get the benefits of the tea itself, but it also contributes to slowing down, reducing anxiety and calming the mind. The tea is hot so you have sit, breathe in the scent, blow on the water and sip. I always make a cup at night right after I tuck my daughter in bed. It's become a habit I look forward to each night. A form of self-care if you will. Another idea is to dedicate a spot in your cabinet to your teas and tea accessories. This creates intention and makes it more fun too. Call it your tea shelf and don't forget to add a jar of your favorite local honey for further health benefits!


Tip #5: Twists (non-linear movement)

We live in such a linear world. We drive to work, sit at our computer (usually with poor posture), drive home, maybe we go for a run, eat dinner, sleep and start that process again the next day. This kind of lifestyle puts our spine in danger of decreased mobility and chronic neck & back pain. We are not linear creatures by nature but meant to move front, back, up, down and sideways. Our body wants to feel that flow! Purposeful non-linear movement can be incredibly beneficial.

One way to incorporate is with a few simple yoga poses involving twists. Basically a twist is any movement where your shoulder is going the opposite direction of your hip. You can do them lying down, seated, sitting or even standing. Twisting offers a whole host of benefits. They keep the soft tissues around our spine mobile, healthy and flexible which supports our back, relieving stiffness and tightness that could result in chronic pain and increased dural tension. Twists also impact our organs too! I love them for digestive support. When the twist is released, fresh blood comes rushing into the organs providing nutrients and oxygen. Twists also release tension in our abdominal muscles and provide healthy stimulation to our organs of elimination. And my favorite benefit...they calm the nervous system! Check out these poses to begin:* easy pose with twist, reclined spinal twist, revolved triangle pose


*Those with chronic back & neck pain resulting from disc disease, osteoporosis, or stenosis approach these exercises under the guidance and supervision of a licensed physical therapist. Flexion, extension, or rotation may be contraindicated in these populations.


Tip #6: Epsom Salt Bath

There are few things more comforting than a hot bath. Adding a scoop of Epsom salts will contribute an extra dose of calm for the mind and body. Epsom salts are in essence magnesium sulfate. The magnesium will help to relieve sore muscles, body fatigue, inflammation and reduce stress. I would also suggest lighting a candle and turning off your phone while you soak in the warmth.


Tip #7: Essential oils

Scent is a powerful messenger for our brain and essential oils are an easy way to tap into the areas we need extra support. There are a few ways you can incorporate essential oils. You can begin simply with opening the bottle and inhaling deeply. Another option is a diffuser which sends your essential oils into the air, allowing you to enjoy the scent and therapeutic benefits in a larger space. They also make essential oil rollerballs which are prepared for the purpose of applying directly to your skin (usually neck, shoulders and temples). If they are not prepared for direct use on the skin, make sure they are properly diluted in a carrier oil first.

Each oil has its own set of benefits. Feel a headache coming on? Reach for peppermint oil and massage onto your temples. Need stress relief? Consider breathing in lavender or rose. Feeling that 3:00 pm slump? Diffuse sweet orange and lemon for a natural energy boost! Other popular oils are rosemary for improving your mood, cinnamon for reducing nervousness and eucalyptus for calming muscle tension. You can easily google different blends or create your own signature blend!

Tip #8: Brisk 15-Minute Walk

Sometimes a quick walk is the best medicine. It moves the body, clears the mind, and allows for fresh air and sun on your skin. A 15 minute walk is equivalent to the medicinal effects of a pill. It lowers blood pressure, decreases insulin sensitivity, increases circulation, improves digestion, improves lymphatic flow, and increases the circulation of feel good hormones such as serotonin in the body. If a pill did all this in 15-minutes it would be considered magic!


Tip #9: "Bread & Water Can So Easily be Toast & Tea"

This has always been one of my favorite quotes. It's a reminder to me that life is all about perspective and that any experience can be elevated into something extra special.

Ideas to elevate the everyday

Add flowers to your dining room table just because they're pretty. Light a candle when you come home from work. Cook dinner to music. Wear an apron in the kitchen. Use a beautiful wine glass to sip sparkling water. Use your fine china when dining alone. Ritualize your morning and evening routine. Turn your bedroom or bathroom into a sanctuary with soft lighting, soothing music and calming scents.


Tip #10: Let Go

Letting go is a simple concept but not always an easy one to implement. However, once you begin the letting go process, change can happen in an instant. I learned about this concept from the book, "Letting Go" by Dr. David Hawkins. This is my interpretation of it and how it has helped me.

So many of us hold so tightly to things; ideas, the past, pain, habits, etc. that sometimes it's easy to lose perspective about what is working for us and what is not. Sometimes it doesn't even occur to us that we are allowed to release worry, to say no, to say yes, or to simply change our mind. Letting go is the opposite of not caring, it's putting our mental health first. Emotions can be intense and after years of being trapped and stuck they can trigger negative reactions that mask who we really are and try to block us from our true potential. The mental shift of becoming aware of what you are holding onto, and then letting go, opens up possibilities. Letting go of anger, resentment, fear, or unnecessary worry leaves space for kindness, gratitude, love, compassion, patience and anew perspective. It's a feeling of freedom allowing us to access the fruit of the spirit. I was once told, "the real battle isn't out there. Its right between your ears."

Here are a few practical life examples:

~Let go of the need to respond to emails and texts right away. 99% of the time a response can wait. Dedicate a time of day to respond when it works for you on your time and on your schedule and not everyone else's.

~Let go of the need to apologize unnecessarily or over explain. I read this quote once. "Its better to say thank you for waiting rather than I'm sorry I'm late."

~Let go of the "shoulds". I should be prettier, skinnier, smarter, more organized, less sensitive and the list goes on. We all want to be our best self. We are bombarded with other people telling us how to be our best self. Look to others for inspiration and ideas but remember no one is like you--you are unique and have your own gifts to give. We are human, not static, not perfect, always growing and evolving. That is what life is about! Strive for authenticity, not perfection.


Tip #11: Meditation

Meditation has become such a buzz word that I hesitated adding it here. However, the benefits cannot be overlooked so I wanted to give you my take on how to incorporate it so it feels easy and accessible. I like to think of it more as sitting in silence for a few breaths. It doesn't have to be a long time as it's the consistency of the practice that makes more of an impact than the length. I have a short yoga practice that I do each morning and at the end I sit with legs crossed, arms in lap and close my eyes. I just sit in the quiet and breathe. I try to keep my attention on my breath. I also become aware of whatever it is I am feeling in my gut. The stillness allows you to listen to that inner voice the hustle and bustle of the day often drowns out. I then bring in feelings of gratefulness and abundance and focus on the blessings of this life. I like ending on that note. You can do this anytime. All you need is about 5 minutes to yourself!


I hope these tips are helpful and you are able to add one or two to your wellness toolbox! Have fun experimenting and enjoy the journey!


If you have any questions about how we can help your health and wellness goals please give us a call at 229.233.6677 or email Sarah and Courtney at info@therapyplusonline.com




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