No wonder we all feel stressed out! Every day, endless external things pull us away from living in balance. And we wonder, is there a Qigong for stress management?. From what is going on in the world to what is going on in our personal lives. Chronic stress, anxiety, fear, and grief continue to be on the rise, even working from home lately feels frustrating and it is causing mental, physical, and social issues. Mostly stress is a reaction caused by focusing on the external world, holding on to negative emotions, and living in survival mode. During stress, we are always in a fight or flight response (stay to deal with the threat or run to safety). This response is triggered by a sudden release of hormones (Cortisol and Adrenalin) and by where the body’s sympathetic nervous system is activated.
Yes! Hormones are essential for helping the body respond to dangerous kinds of situations but not when getting too stressed on daily basis. Stress has a 77% negative impact on both our mind and body. When it is not managed, it tremendously affects our health and can weaken our immune system.
Here is a list of physical and emotional signs caused by Stress:
- Digestive Difficulty
- Gut Disorders
- Muscle tension
- High Blood Sugar
- Weight issues
- Shallow breathing
- Difficulty sleeping
- Chest Pain
- Memory and concentration difficulties
- Fatigue and Exhaustion
Can Qigong really help with Stress Management?
Being a Wellbeing Transformational Therapist has allowed me to help others reduce their stress level and enhance their wellbeing. I greatly follow an Inside-Out approach that encompasses neuroscience-backed strategies with holistic effective techniques. The modalities that I practice deal with the root cause and the organ concern rather than with the external symptoms. As I consequently continue to focus on evolving my spiritual journey, I found that managing my stress level has a lot to do with managing my ENERGY rather than TIME. Practicing Qigong for stress management is an easy way to reduce these stressors.
Energy and Stress Management: How are they related?
Energy Management starts first with internal transformational changes. Moreover, it helps you stay connected with yourself so you can move from: living in survival to living in creation, from outdated emotions to elevated emotions, from troubling to balancing the Mind-Body and Spirit.
Traditional Chinese medicine indicates that stress and negative emotions can all block the normal flow of energy throughout the human body. It is believed that emotions are connected to the energy channels in the body and each relates to a specific internal organ. (grief/lungs, fear/ kidneys, anger/liver…). To establish balance and calm, you have to manage your E-motions (Energy in motions) and remove the blockages in your body. The good thing is that you can do this on your own. When your stress level goes UP, you need to calm it DOWN. As in Qigong, the masters say:
“IF COLD HEAT IT, IF HOT COOL IT.”
How Qigong helped me manage stress?
Whether you are seeking natural healing, stress release, and wellbeing balance, or increasing self-awareness, qigong can help. Qigong translates as “ Energy Cultivation”. More importantly, one of the most effective ancient Chinese culture modalities that work perfectly on balancing your vibrational energy. Additionally, it focuses on harmonizing the Jing (Body), Qi (Breath), and Shen (Spirit) while combining slow sequences of meditative movements with breathing techniques and positive visualizations. Qigong teaches you to be Authentic, Vital, and Resilient. This shows you how to create a higher state from the core of your being. It is like tapping into your force by drawing upon the power of silence. It gives you this unique “AHA” moment the minute you sense your Energy. Whether you feel that tingling (Skin Qi), pulsing (Nerve Qi), heaviness (Bones Qi), or Hot/cold sensation.
Connection is the key
Whatever style of Qigong from White Tiger Qigong you choose to practice, it allows you to reconnect with your life force and essential energies. White Tiger Qigong stands out with its special fusion of ancient Daoist Medical Qigong and Modern Sports Science (targeting the Fascia, Kinetic Chain, Meridians…). It is aiming to reach 10% of the population to raise consciousness and create positive transformation for a better world.
“By Letting Go, It all gets done” -Lao Tzu
Qigong techniques you can use to combat stress
The 8 trigram is one of the White Tiger Qigong forms that have huge benefits on our mental, physical and emotional as well as spiritual health. Similarly effective in managing the stress level in the body. This sequence creates a Qi rhythm with continuous smooth flowing movements. This works by wringing out and opening up the meridians while massaging the internal organs, flossing, and cleansing the body from stagnant Qi and negative emotions. This system provides a clear pathway for the Qi to flow naturally like water through the entire body to nourish our essence while staying grounded and rooted in a horse stance position.
Using Qigong Forms to practice
Firstly, start with Throwing Away The Trash, this opening movement of all the sequences helps to warm the body and to remove emotional toxins while cleansing the organs with the 6 healing sounds. Secondly, do the Dragon Back. This is where you create wave movement to help wake up and undulate the spine. It will also warm the kidneys, and improve brain health. Additionally, this technique is a preparation of the body for the full sequence. The Dragon Whips Its Tail provides the same benefits as the Dragon Back adding to it the hand’s motion to open the upper body meridians and fill up the 3 Dantians (Lower: Qi Storage and Vitality, Middle: Emotion, Upper: Wisdom).
Stress and circulation
This Qigong form also improves Qi circulation and shoulders mobility. So as you continue with Serving Tea Cups, this helps opens the chest, massage the lower back, and loosen the spine, neck, hip through a full hip rotation. In addition, doing the Rabbit Spring will help cleaning the stagnation in the digestive system while gently massaging the 8 abdominal points of the entire colon. Furthermore, Qigong’s movement releases tension and takes out stress from the body.
The Separating Heaven and Earth also increases flexibility for the spine and activates the organs and the lymphatic system. The 7th Qigong is the Spiral Palm. This helps gather Qi to the Dantians and while twisting and wringing out, you engage the upper body meridians. From the Dragon Ball, you circulate the Qi around the entire body to balance and massage all the internal organs. After all, the 8 Trigram Organ Qigong is experiential rather than conceptual. As a result, you will feel the benefits of it are immeasurable and cannot be all covered in one article.
How does Qigong manage stress?
As I am highlighting the importance of managing our stress level by managing our Energy. Daily Qigong Routine practice with from the 8 Trigram Organ Qigong can helps. It suppresses the Adrenaline rush and reduces the cortisol level in the body. After a long tuff day, practice The Throwing Away the Trash with the 6 healing sounds to relieve suppressed emotions or The Rabbit Spring to clear stagnation in your digestive system. Moreover, it is essential to start your practice first with the cleansing breath technique in Zhan Zhuang (Standing Meditation). This helps calm the Mind-Body.
In addition, you should add this after shaking to release tension and do the four heavenly Pillars. This is from the Meridian Qigong to engage the nerve flossing. Achieving a Flow State in your Qigong practice is key. Qigong for stress management is only effective if we form a habit of doing it. This will alleviate stress, decrease cognitive load, slow brainwaves and activate the parasympathetic (rest/digest) nervous system. These Qigong forms helped me with stress management.
Tips to a good Qigong for stress management
Here are few tips you can follow that will help you reach a flow state and harmonize the body, breath, and Spirit.
- Find a quiet and meditative place (if possible connect with nature or bring nature to you)
- Turn off your devices and commit for a “Me” time
- Set an intention for your practice and give it up to 20 to 40mins
- Slow down your movements to create a rhythmic flow
- Create a repetition set of the form you are practising.
- However, if you get distracted with unnecessary thoughts, this is normal (focus again on your breathing, count backwards or concentrate on your palms).
- Close your eyes while practising and imagine that you can see within your body. 8- While you inhale connect to a positive emotion and while you exhale feel the stress evaporating.
- Expand your sensation and visualize natural violet light showering and cleansing your body.
- Draw a smile into your face, to send a signal for your Mind that you are greater than Tima and any circumstances.
“Nature does not hurry yet everything is accomplished” Lao Tzu
In conclusion, I personally love Qigong as a transformational experience for me. Every time I practice it, I feel empowered, renewed, and energized. Every practice brings with its uniqueness. Qigong helps me to listen to the signs. Signs from my body and teaches me every day to go with it and never be against it. Managing my energy is a priority in order to maintain my optimal vitality and longevity. However, being able to teach and share Qigong with others is a privilege and a gift.