How Yoga Can Help You Destress in 2020
What does an average day in your life look like? Do a ringing phone, crying baby, barking dog, and overflowing email inbox sound familiar? More likely than not, in 2020, you’ve added “keeping up with the ever-changing news cycle” and “scrolling through multiple quarrelsome social media feeds” to the mix, not to mention financial hardship and illness-related anxiety due to COVID-19.
From the global coronavirus pandemic to the racial strife surrounding the Black Lives Matter protests and more, 2020 has been a hotbed of stressful current events. And it’s only June!
So, what’s the solution? Well, you already know we believe yoga is the solution to just about everything, but nothing is better at mitigating stress better than yoga. If you’re feeling tired, overwhelmed, anxious, sad, burnt out, or all of the above, yoga may be a useful tool in helping you feel better.
Here are some key ways yoga can help relieve stress that is related to all that’s gone on this year.
Yoga can relieve stress & boost your mood.
Stress-relief and mood-boosting are by and large the most well-known benefits of yoga. The breathing, poses, and meditation involved in yoga all help you to be more mindful, present, and relaxed. Exercise is also proven to release endorphins and serotonin, both feel-good hormones, in your brain.
Yoga can help relieve chronic illnesses.
With greater stress comes the chance of aggravating chronic illnesses such as anxiety, depression, insomnia, high blood pressure, heart disease, and other chronic-pain-causing conditions. Yoga is proven to relieve the symptoms of these illnesses and more. Not to mention lower your stress levels, which can never hurt!
Yoga can add structure to your life.
With many workers laid off or furloughed, and even more now working from home, our familiar routine and life structure have been shaken up or removed altogether. Without public spaces, events, or friends to visit, your days may feel like they’re blending into one another. This lack of structure can be incredibly stressful on top of everything else going on. Having weekly or biweekly online yoga classes is one way to add or maintain structure and a familiar routine in your life.
Yoga can give you a community.
It may not be the most obvious stressor caused by the pandemic, but loneliness and isolation are a drain on mental health, and COVID has worsened the problem. Loneliness is shown to have ill effects not only on mental but physical health and our overall longevity.
Sadly, loneliness due to social distancing and isolation has been one of the worst tolls COVID-19 has taken on the world. Luckily, with modern technology, we’ve been able to mitigate some of the effects of greater isolation by connecting online. Long before the virus, people have found online communities to help them through difficult times. Now more than ever, people are using the web to find the connection and community they’re missing.
Community is one of the underrated benefits of yoga, which is why many yoga classes have been moving online. “Zoom yoga” is an excellent way not only to continue practicing yoga and reaping its stress-relieving benefits; it’s a good way to find a likeminded community to help you through this challenging time.