Top 7 Stress Busting Tips

April is National Stress Awareness Month 

In honor of my book being published this month during National Stress Awareness Month, here are 7 great tips from my new book Inner Power NOW to help you and your family thrive.  Are you ready to release stress and worry?

When you take time for calm, you’ll be more available for yourself and your family. It’s that airplane warning to  put the oxygen mask on yourself first and then your child.  Please enjoy my favorite  7 Stress Busting Tips for you and your family.

1. Breathe slowly and deeply. 
Before reacting to the next stressful thing, take three deep breaths and release them slowly. If you have a few minutes, try out a relaxation technique such as a brief meditation or guided imagery.

2. Get outside for a break 
Feel the healing power of fresh air. Feel the vibration of being alive and the beauty of nature or the bustle of city life. Don’t be deterred by foul weather or a full schedule. Even five minutes outside can be rejuvenating.

3. Move your body 
We all know exercise can provide an outlet for frustration. Even a quick burst of exercise can help. These may include a quick run up several flights of stairs, doing gentle stretching, or dancing to a favorite tune.

4. Include a joy booster
Plan something rewarding for the end of your stressful day. Enjoy a relaxing bath or read a good book. Turn off your screens and cell phone 30 minutes to an hour before bedtime. Avoid thinking of your to do list for tomorrow. Let yourself fully relax.

5. Give yourself a good laugh 
Laughing helps you feel better in a matter of minutes. It boosts endorphins and other feel-good hormones. It can also put things in perspective. It’s hard to feel fear or anger when we’re laughing.

6. Count your blessings. 
Gratitude is a great way to raise your energy and open your heart.  Think of three good things, even if this day has been full of stress or disappointments. Close your eyes and focus on your heart when you think of three good things.  Make sure you also write them down.

7. Love yourself more!
This is the best medicine. Do the things that make you happy and add more joy. This is a great way to take care of your needs and reduce stress long-term.  Sometimes we become more stressed when we forget about self-care. Spread Loving Kindness to yourself first and then to others.

Wishing you and your family the best!
Vicki 

Vicki Atlas Israel is the Author of #1 Amazon Bestseller “Inner Power NOW.”  Order the book at InnerPowerMindset.com. Contact Vicki if you’re interested in having her speak at your next event.  As a Best Mindset Coach and Certified Guided Imagery Specialist, Vicki’s purpose is to bring more love, joy, and healing to children and families.  You can connect with her on Facebook or email her at Vicki@InnerPowerMindset.com

 

Laughter Is the Best Medicine

 Wonder what a big belly laugh can do for you?

Laughter can enhance your mood, your health, and your happiness.  Everything from a slight giggle to huge laughter feeds your spirit and also builds connections and friendships.

You may have heard of the book Anatomy of an Illness by Dr. Norman Cousins published a few decades ago.   Dr. Cousins was almost on his death bed, when he took up watching funny comedies and shows all day long for pain control.  He wound up reversing his illness.    Dr. Cousins later won numerous honorary degrees for writing his book, including the UN Peace Medal.

Laughter Yoga is based on this concept of healthy laughter that can be fun to do in group.  Start laughing and see how contagious it can be.  Keep the laughter going for 15 to 20 minutes.  I have a few exercises to try in a group later in this article.

A daily 15-to-20 minutes of laughter can do wonders for your health.  Researchers Dr. Lee Berk and Dr. Stanley Tan at Loma Linda University in California studied the benefits of laughter and found these results. Start watching comedy shows or cartoons to begin reaping benefits.

 

Blood Pressure Drops

They found laughter lowers blood pressure.  People who lower their blood pressure also reduce their risk of stroke and heart attack.

Reduces Stress Hormones

Researchers found it lowers stress hormones, like cortisol.  By reducing the level of stress hormones, you’re cutting anxiety that impacts your body. Also, it helps build a higher immune system. Laughter, even in the midst of difficult times, releases pressure and helps you cope.

Build Strong Abs

One of the benefits of laughter is that it can help you tone your ab muscles. When you’re laughing, your stomach expands and contracts.  It’s like exercising your abs, but so much more fun.

Improves Your Cardio

Get a great cardio workout with laughter.   Even those who are incapable of doing other physical activity due to injury or illness, may benefit.  Researchers claim laughter burns a similar amount of calories per hour as walking at a slow to moderate pace.  So, laugh more, stress less.

Boosts Your Immunity

When you laugh, you activate T-cells that immediately begin to help you fight off sickness. Next time you feel a cold coming on, add some laughter to make it go away.

Releases Feel Good Hormones

Endorphins are the body’s natural painkillers. By laughing, you can release endorphins, which can help ease chronic pain and make you feel good all over.

Helps WellBeing

Laughter can increase your overall sense of well-being. People who have a positive outlook on life tend to fight diseases better than people who tend to be more negative.  Doctor’s order—smile, laugh, and live longer!

LAUGHTER YOGA

I have presented these exercises in my teacher trainings on mindfulness and they’ve been a hit!  You may feel silly at first, but try these exercises in a group of people, as laughter is contagious. Make sure participants can look around the room and see others laughing.  This is important and adds to the fun!

Exercise 1: You may stand or sit.  As you take a big breath, bring your arms over head arching back a little.  Then bring your arms down with laughter (Ha-ha-ha), having others join in and do the same. Keep doing this for several minutes.  Bringing your arms up overhead, and then down with laughter (Ha-Ha-Ha.)

Exercise 2:  Clap your hands in front of you 3 times, as you say:  “Very good, Very good,”  after the last “Very good,” lift your arms overhead, like the exercised before, and come down laughing.  (Ha-ha-ha.). Keep doing this same exercise for several minutes.

Have a good laugh and pass it on!

Vicki Atlas Israel is a Best Mindset Coach and Certified Guided Imagery Specialist.  Vicki is passionate about helping you feel less stressed, more calm, and happier  Find her at HeartTalkNow.com. You can connect with her on Facebook and Instagram or email her at Vicki@HeartTalkNow.com.

The Power of Visualization and Meditation

This story will make you a true believer in the power of visualization, meditation, and setting intentions.  Believe in miracles and this may happen to you, too.  I’ve had amazing things come true in the last few months that I have to share.   

Last year, I had attended a Breakthrough to Success Training with Jack Canfield, New York Times Bestselling Author and Co-Creator of Chicken Soup for the Soul Series® and The Success Principles®. Jack overheard me talking about a book that I was writing.  The book Inner Power NOW is to help strengthen families, parents and children, with soothing breathing techniques, guided imagery, and meditation.  It’s intended to relieve stress and embrace healing at home, in pediatric hospitals, and at school.

Following my brief talk, Jack went on stage and asked if he could endorse my book once it’s done.  He said he believed this is really needed and could benefit parents and children.  To me, that was a Divine moment because earlier in the week I had been asking for clarity before my meditation—”please give me a sign.”  I was questioning whether I was on the right path wanting to teach these skills and techniques to both parents and kids.  Now, I had received a clear sign—Jack’s promised endorsement!  But that’s not all.

In the past few months, Jack not only came through with an endorsement, but he wrote a fabulous foreword to my book which will be published in February 2019.  Then, because I had asked about a possible video testimonial, he also sent a beautiful video message that I may use to help promote Inner Power NOW and audio series.  He is also allowing me to use this message in our possible research at a pediatric hospital in St. Louis and in schools.  This beautiful amazing gift keeps on giving.  Even in my visualizations, I had not even imagined all of this.

What’s the message and lesson?  Keep doing guided imagery and visualize what you most want in your life before you meditate. The key is to have a strong intention and gratitude. Then, surrender it to a power greater than you.  That can be your wiser self, the Divine, or the power of the universe.  Your visualization eventually will come true in some future time.  And remember to ask for a sign, as you let it go.

Click here to get a free guided imagery on how to create your day and become a part of my Inner Power Circle.  You’ll receive updates on the book, bonuses, and newsletter.

Learn to meditate and visualize to help live your dreams.  Turn down the noise, turn off your screens, and embrace calm as a Superpower.  Take advantage of my Holiday Half-Price Sale on all my guided imagery in my store.  

Wishing you peace,

Vicki

 

Vicki Atlas is a Best Mindset Coach and Certified Guided Imagery Specialist.  Vicki is passionate about helping children and parents feel less stressed, more calm, and happier  Find her at HeartTalkNow.com. You can connect with her on Facebook and Instagram or email her at Vicki@HeartTalkNow.com.

Kindness Matters: Pass it On

Today is International Kindness Day.  In a day and age where civility seems to have gone by the wayside, what can we do to create more kindness? Do you know that there’s a direct correlation between showing kindness and receiving kindness? The two acts feed off one another and lead to a perpetual cycle of giving. Your kindness does matter as it ripples out into the world.

Scientists have also discovered a certain hormone called oxytocin which increases when we are empathic or generous. When the level of oxytocin increases, the circuit in the brain that controls fear, anxiety and rage shuts down. That is why practicing kindness leads to greater empathy and morality. It is also difficult to hold a grudge.

It is important to teach children about kindness—what it is, how to identify it, and how to practice it. We develop empathy following rules for expected behavior in the classroom, preventing bullying and developing compassion. Children learn by playing. When children are role-playing, they are also learning about perspectives and skills to stand in another’s shoes. We learn about our differences and similarities.

If we have not learned basic kindness skills by the time we are around 8 years old, it is very difficult to teach. This lack of empathy leads to anti-social behavior.

Without empathy, we have no chance at civility. We need that connection to feel human. We also need to be connected to a purpose greater than our own. Our inner power helps to create the best mindset through meditation and connecting to our heart.

Model civility, practice kindness every day, whether opening a car door, helping a lost puppy find its home, or helping a senior citizen cross the road safely. The very act of kindness creates more kindness, more empathy, and self-respect, and more “feel-good” hormones.

Engaging in kindness and compassion is what makes for a grateful society. And who doesn’t need a little more gratitude in our world? Here’s a way to begin your day in kindness and gratitude with this morning six-minute meditation. Click here to download for FREE this meditation and join my Inner Power Circle!

As Comedian and Talk Show Host Ellen DeGeneres always says, “Be kind to one another!”

Vicki Atlas is a Best Mindset Coach and Certified Guided Imagery Specialist.  Vicki is passionate about helping children and parents feel less stressed, more calm, and happier  Find her at HeartTalkNow.com and CalmingCorner.comfor kids. You can connect with her on Facebook and Instagram or email her at Vicki@HeartTalkNow.com.

Mindfulness Comes to St. Louis Schools

Before school begins this fall, teachers at McKinley Classical Leadership Academy in St. Louis will learn mindfulness and meditation.  They will be trained on how to relieve stress and tension so they may pass this on to their students.  All will be learning tools and breathing techniques for calm and focus.   As a Best Mindset Coach, and Certified in Guided Imagery, I’m excited to be collaborating with McKinley in St. Louis to train their teachers.  We will be helping their team and students build emotional resilience to be more successful in learning and life.

As you may know, many of these students may come from poorer neighborhoods, where they witness more crime, violence, and trauma.  From new research, we’re learning that a traumatized brain makes learning more difficult.  Studies show when we calm the mind and body through yoga, meditation, and other mind-body practices, the brain develops new neural pathways that enhances the creative areas, and shuts down the Reptilian “fight or flight” that’s stuck in fear.   Other schools leaders throughout the country have discovered that mindfulness and meditation may be a better way to handle detention and conflict.

It’s obvious students need new tools to help with stress and anxiety.  New research published by the American Psychological Association shows teens may experience higher levels of stress than adults (during the school year.)  Yet, teens don’t have great ways to relieve stress. Most popular are video games or surfing the internet. While these may be stress reducing, they may not be building resilience to help teens cope better with difficulties in life.

This is where meditation, guided imagery, and mindfulness can help. Research shows that when teens practice meditation and guided imagery, it can lower rates of anxiety and depression, and may help with sleep. It can also help with schoolwork and focus, as well as build stronger relationships.

Help our children succeed in life and build emotional resilience! If you’re a teacher or parent and want your schools to build Inner Power Learning and use these breathing and mindful techniques, let your school leadership know about our services.  Contact us at Heart Talk Now for a free 30-minute Strategy Session

Wishing you peace!

Vicki

Vicki Atlas is a Best Mindset Coach and Certified Guided Imagery Specialist.  Vicki is passionate about bringing more peace and wellbeing to parents and families.  Find her at HeartTalkNow.com and email her at Vicki@HeartTalkNow.com