Reflexology for dealing with Stress & Anxiety

These days, it's not unusual to spend more time at work than at home.  Plus, it's often very difficult to switch off and hard to avoid taking the stresses of the day and some of the workload home with us.  When this happens, it can affect your physical, mental and emotional state of health and the quality of your personal relationships as a result.  Reflexology is a powerful antidote to stress and tension and incorporating Reflexology sessions into your regular monthly routine should be seriously considered as a remedial measure and and to help prevent sustained, harmful stress.

During Reflexology sessions, I teach my clients some relaxation techniques and tips they can use daily to help counterbalance the effects of their busy working lives. 

The effects of Stress creeps into many aspects of our lives in an all too constant fashion and can be acutely felt as a weight, or burden on your shoulders, as a constant buzzing sensation in your head, a surge of panic, negative feelings, and even aches or a sickness in the pit of your stomach. Prolonged stress periods can even result in muscular pain and to add to the annoyance, the stress itself can create a more powerful stress response, making it a vicious circle of experiences.

The art of dealing with stress is to recognise these warning signs in yourself as early as possible, so that you can act promptly and make the most of techniques such as Reflexology, to bring some regular calm and balance into your life.

When you learn to relax your body, you are able to cope with the challenges of life much more effectively and easily, life flows more freely, you'll feel more positive and better able to make good decisions. On a physiological level, as you relax, your stress hormones recede which allows your body systems and functions to return to a balanced mode and operate in the way that they are intended.

Furthermore, when you are relaxed, your body is better able to resist infection and disease and and heal any physical, mental or emotional imbalances.

Why you must be Wild for Self Care

We all have different versions of what self-care means to us. When we ignore it for long enough, we can get health problems. I see men, and women particularly who move through the weeks and months with the odd headache, neck and back tightness, feeling tired, depleted and overwhelmed from yo-yo busyness of an overactive world. 

The more dangerous side effects like heart disease and depression can come as a result of an ongoing inability to take some time-out.

Before you know it, months go by and suddenly you realise that such a small portion of that time has been spent on loving and caring for yourself, and that’s if you are really conscious and self-aware.  Because then you are more likely to take action to avoid it in future.

Because there is no prescription for self-care it’s up to us as individuals to decide what we should be doing to nurture ourselves and re-charge. Whatever, it’s absolutely necessary for optimum mind and body health but we are simply not doing enough of it.

A common viewpoint is that practising self-care is indulgent. Really?

Strategies for preserving mind and body don’t have to be complex or involve finding hours of time in a week. Think about what can fit in with your lifestyle.

Still confused?

Source help in making a self-care plan and have someone hold you accountable to practising your chosen rituals.

Be consistent, put as much emphasis and importance on practising self-care as you would to your job, your kids, your partner. Stop cancelling or postponing appointments that allow you to indulge in some therapeutic relaxation.

Having an outlet to get out of your mind and to just ‘be’, recharges your batteries and gives you space to breathe, consider life, discover solutions, get clarity, find serenity.

Stop feeling guilty for taking a break from your life. It’s selfish not to adopt regular self-care, and that's not just for yourself.  

Think of it from this perspective, if it makes you feel better and gives you greater context…

You owe it to your loved ones, those that you care for, or those that rely on you to keep them safe and healthy.  You have to be well or how can you do what’s expected of you to your best?  

Stop being selfish. Make it a priority.

So, take some time out this week, create some calm in your life, take an hour for some therapy, meditate, laugh, sing, shop, exercise.  

If necessary, get some help to make it happen.

Luxury Candles Worth Forking Out For

Being a complementary therapist with a love of interior design, it goes without saying really that scented candles are an important, exciting, indulgent part of my home and working life.  They make my rooms smell wonderful of course, but their proven well being benefits give an added, welcome dimension to my Reflexology or Natural Facelift treatments. 

Scented candles to de-stress, bring calmness, energise, aid sleep and more.  Whatever fragrance you desire, there's a scented candle out there to help achieve a better state of body and mind, go and experiment.

Having tried many brands on the market, from affordable to pure luxury, I've found that it does not pay to scrimp.  My advice?  Purchase the most expensive ones you can afford.  That way, you'll get a candle that's created from pure, natural ingredients and a fragrance that uses the best essential oils available. There's nothing worse than those cheap, chemical laden, fake smelling examples made with vivid coloured wax you often see in store.  Don't waste your money.  Plus, when you spend a bit more money, conversely it will last longer because you don't have to burn it for a long time.  Just an hour, or until there's a nice even pool of melted wax around the wick, then blow it out.  It will continue to fragrance the air for a while longer.

It's difficult to whittle them down but in no particular order, here's my top five brands of choice that I think you'd enjoy too...

1/  The ultimate indulgent candle with simply stunning scents within a hand blown Italian glass container by French brand Astier de Villate.  Expensive and I wish it would last longer!

2/ Pretty containers, wonderful prominent scents and more affordable than its competitors.  A great, visually pleasing candle to display on a fireplace and use as an interesting vase when it's finished- Voluspa.

3/ Pretty, elegant glass containers, packaging and variety of delicate fragrances from British brand, Jo Malone.  The attention to detail with this brand is first-rate.

4/ I really like Molton Brown, not just because of their fragrance combinations but because of their lovely coloured glass containers and seemingly longer burn time.

5/ Pure aromatherapy indulgence, quality and simplicity go into making Neom one of my top five candle brands.  They group their range so it makes it easier to combine candles with body lotions, oils and foams for a complete head to toe, inside out experience.

Do you have a favourite scented candle? Do share below.