Stress Relief 3: Shake, shake, shake

A few days back I helped a friend cope with the anxiety of public speaking. Now, dealing with that anxiety can be very complicated. There is job pressure, people staring, anticipation, fear of failure... Yet, it can also be surprisingly simple to deal with. With a little bit of shaking.

Those of you who have read my book or seen my blogs before are familiar with my overall theme in dealing with burnout, depression, anxiety, stress, trauma and loss: focus a lot on the physical, not just the mental. And there is no clearer way of proving this than looking at how to get rid of feelings of anxiety. Our body already has the perfect answer for that.

Think of what you do when you are confronted with an unpleasant thought or scenario: you shiver. Or think of an athlete who is about to enter their competition: they shake off the nerves. Or how about a dog giving a satisfying little rattle after a refreshing dive?

Humans and animals alike, we relief stress by shaking. Even the most severe effects of anxiety disorder, burnout and trauma, such as detachment and depersonalized feelings, can be fought good periods of shaking your body. There are now even entire therapies based on this practice and the effects work within minutes.

If you are interested in knowing more, my suggestion is to start with the martial arts, especially Qi Gong, with the best lessons from Melissa from YoQi. In those lessons, shaking is a central theme in many of the flows. I do it every morning and it has cured me of all the biggest and most notorious effects of anxiety.

So, shake, shake, shake! And take it easy as always.