So, you need better ways to cope and you don’t want to take medication. I get it. A lot of my clients want to be able to cope with stress and anxiety better and they consider medication a last resort option…
For myself, I have tried anything and everything to cope with anxiety. I am a very Type A personality, and I have been a worry wart since I could walk. For example, when I didn’t get a 100% on my first spelling test in the second grade, I worried and cried! That was only the beginning of my lifelong battle with anxiety and stress. It’s in my personality and my genetic code…
My sensitivity makes me a wonderful therapist. I am intuitive and can sometimes pick up on what people need or feel before they can even put words to it themselves… Of course, I have still had to find my own coping mechanisms, especially when being a therapist can lead to burnout and chronic stress if I am not careful.
At the National Psychotherapy Networker convention that I attended in March, they announced that regular Yoga practice has been found to improve sleep and reduce anxiety symptoms better than medication.
This made my ears perk up. I started doing yoga last fall after years of not getting enough exercise. My youngest child has autism, and I was just in the trenches for a very long time with my husband trying to get all of his interventions and needs met. Yoga one time per week helped me feel so much better. I started falling asleep better, and I felt more energized. I also started exercising a lot more.
Two weeks ago, I was on a roll exercising about five or six times a week. I get bored easily, so I was mixing it up: cycling class one day, yoga another, Zumba, barre class, pilates, and kettlebell class. My gym has every kind of class you can imagine! Just when I was feeling like I was getting a lot stronger, I injured my lower back during kettlebell class. 🙁
My back was in pain for two weeks! I took time off from exercise until today. I drug myself to yoga class only because my stress was getting too bad from not exercising. My back was in pain the entire class, but all of those yoga poses and stretches worked a miracle. And I didn’t even think that was possible! Ten hours later and I just did a Downward Facing Dog with zero back pain. If only I had gone to yoga the day after my injury!
Yoga is so healing. And there are apparently ways to help heal psychological trauma via yoga. (Clearly it helped my mild physical trauma LOL). I might even become a yoga teacher and incorporate in everything I have learned as a therapist about reducing anxiety into the yoga classes.
Bottom line, I don’t normally write about yoga since I am not a practitioner. However, I have started incorporating recommendations for yoga into treatment plans for some of my clients. If you are suffering from anxiety, and are looking for additional methods for coping in addition to psychotherapy, I recommend yoga for sure.
If you need assistance with reducing and managing anxiety via psychotherapy, please Contact one of our Relationship Repair Associates today.