Anyone who suffers from stress can easily bear witness to the destruction that it causes. For anyone who has had to live with stress – or live with someone who lives with it – the effects are quite distressing. It rips the enjoyment out of things you had come to rely on. It can lead to you taking your anger and annoyance out on undeserving friends and family, with harsh words or worse. Learning yoga can be an excellent way to beat stress and get your smile back – something that some sufferers can easily end up thinking will never happen.
Yoga helps to beat stress in three major ways; the first is the exercise itself. Exercise in general causes the body to release endorphins – the brain’s own happy chemicals that allow you to feel chilled out. Yoga also works to release muscle tension, which lets the body feel more relaxed – a message it will soon pass on to the brain.
The second beneficial element of yoga for stress relief is the effect of breath control. Breath control, or Pranayama, is a part of the exercise regime of yoga that can be taken separately from the exercises themselves. When you know how to control your breath – yes, it sounds stupid but bear with it – you can find yourself quickly adapting to take deep breaths when you are feeling stressed. This normally leads to the stress lifting very quickly.
Finally, yoga helps you to clear your mind. One major cause of stress is constant thoughts of what you should be doing, what you will have to do tomorrow, and how you are going to deal with situations. Once you learn to clear your mind through meditation, you will be much closer to a stress-free life.