Stress

We all experience stress differently, yet an underlying common feeling is one of scraping by or just about keeping your head above water. By providing a calming, stilling and reassuring presence and conveying this through hands-on massage, your body and internal system will register this support and feel more able to let go. This letting go will enable everything to soften a little, creating more space for fluids to flow. By taking you gently into a state of relaxation, your body has a greater chance to restore and recover- to ‘come down’ from a ‘state of emergency’.

The stronger we are, the more robust we consider ourselves to be and the more determined we are in driving ourselves, when faced with stress, we are more likely to increase our effort in order to stem the tide and avoid being overwhelmed. Yet over time, this is counter-productive as we are virtuous traits begin driving us further into to a state of tiredness, exhaustion and burn-out. We feel this. Yet many of us have been conditioned to over-ride these biological signals and carry on! Biodynamic Massage Therapy is an effective way for you and your body to experience a short-enough pause. Since this type of behaviour is habitual, it is difficult to do this by yourself. My presence is to support your body through soothing and reassuring touch and to give permission for your body to recover and to provide assistance- using various techniques—where needed. Clients often feel safe enough to truly relax. At the end of your massage, you may feel refreshed, ready for proper rest and/ or feel lighter and brighter. Recently, at my Copperbeech practice in Staines, stress relief for a client happened within the hour and the effect lasted far beyond the session itself. One of the reasons for choosing Copperbeech Cabins in Staines is for its peaceful environment, a place where I can provide you with a safe and grounded space to let go and let everything drop away. Even if it is for a relatively brief period, your body will benefit.

Stress can also accumulate over time. It could be something subtle, such as the threat of company re-organisation and other events that can cause a relatively low-grade but chronic source of anxiety. As part of your regular self-care, Biodynamic Massage Therapy is suitable as an integral part of an effective health-maintenance regime. With regular treatments, not only would you be better equipped to deal with sleep problems, injuries, loss of appetite, overeating, difficulty in staying focused and impairment in mental concentration, you will also increase your awareness and be more alert to early signs and be able to respond earlier.

When stress becomes chronic, symptoms may manifest as hormonal imbalances and a compromised immune system, recurring injuries and other feelings of imbalance, longer-term biodynamic massage therapy is helpful and complements other interventions.

From my personal experience working within companies, consulting, and supporting organisations through employee assistance schemes, I know that stress from work is what many people experience. This has come about because of a number of factors: the smartphone and mobile 24/7 communication culture, headcount reductions, restructures, merger and acquisitions, workload, ‘everything is urgent’, matrixed organisations and unaligned organisations. All of these lead to gaps in doing and saying, dysfunctional bosses and teams, insufficient training, lack of integration, loss of control, lack of accountability… and the list goes on.

Work stress can also be a result of a critical incident at work. This could be a major reorganisation, restructure, change of leadership, merger and acquisition, or major incident, including incidents that attract adverse publicity. Depending on the scale and severity of the situation, attention is often given to the management of the incident and the containment of media responses and employee responses. The effect on the individual is that they are unable to talk about their own feelings, thoughts and responses in a real or substantial way. As a result, individuals put a lid on their naturally occurring and emotionally charged energy. This energy is stored within the body in fluids and tissues with no clear way of dissipating. Exercise can be helpful. Yet in my experience, exercise alone is often insufficient to bring the body back into a felt sense of safety; and this feeling is essential in helping the body restore balance.

Work stress can also take the form of low-grade but persistent and ongoing events. This might take the form of an unrelenting series of changes, where organisations continually switch from one agenda to the next. Or it could be a lack of knowing why change is needed. Or it could simply be the multiplicity of tasks that require attention, with no sign of letting up. Commuting, traffic, noise and multi-sensory bombardment all add to a state of sustained ‘alertness’ that could send your body into a vicious cycle of overload in stress-related hormones. We may all experience this overload in different ways and with any combination of signs including weight loss, weight gain, difficulty in sleeping, being ‘on’ all the time, difficulty in switching off, unable to relax, going through the motions, digestive problems, constipation or piles. These are signs that your body needs some help to be ‘brought down’ through a process of winding down into relaxation, rest and restoration.

Biodynamic Massage Therapy works directly with your energy and your body and I am particularly aware of the role emotions and feelings can affect us- whether in terms of how they are held in our bodies and how they drive all forms of behaviour- conscious, unconscious and sub-conscious. Biodynamic Massage Therapy simultaneously supports and invites greater connectivity and flow. Feelings of security, release and support are conveyed and felt directly and this in turn brings about greater feelings of spaciousness and resourcefulness. In this context, I see Biodynamic Massage Therapy as an empowering massage therapy that simultaneously releases and gives back power and energy for people working through life’s challenges.

Life stress can be caused by generally busy or overloaded lives. It is not uncommon these days for us to have to cope with multiple families, single parenting and multiple jobs – with everyone wanting and needing our attention, time and resources. This can leave you feeling very depleted, with not much left in the tank. For many people, when you don’t have time, the last thing you want to do is to give time to yourself. Yet this is the only way in which you can ensure you are supported and replenished enough to carry on taking care of others. Otherwise, you may find yourself facing major health problems (physical and mental) or experiencing burnout.

Life stress can also be cause by major life events. These events can trigger high spikes in stress levels that may take some time to bring down. Major life events can include moving house, changing jobs, getting married, relationship breakdowns, illness, having a baby, infertility, death of loved ones.
Life stress can also include stages in life, transitions, significant decisions, starts, stops and step-changes in one or multiple dimensions of our life-space. In our minds, we may be aware we feel ‘niggled’ or worried—we might rationalise, reason or even tell ourselves off for worrying. Yet, our bodies may hold, tell and express a different story. As a Biodynamic Massage Therapist, I communicate non-verbally with your body, acknowledge what is happening and in doing so, help bring relief and an increased awareness to how you could take care of yourself through these significant times in your life.

Depending on what is going on, Biodynamic Massage Therapy can work extremely effectively on it’s own or in conjunction with talk therapies.

Are you feeling stressed out? Your wedding day is a very special day. A great deal of attention is normally given to everything that has to come together to make the day a day to remember: dress, catering, wedding lists, venue, cake, photographer… the list goes on. What is often felt but grossly neglected is the emotional stress that is caused by having to make sure that nothing goes wrong.

It seems a bit crazy how we spend thousands on weddings but often neglect the most important aspect of our wedding – us! In the run up to your wedding, make sure you book yourself a series of massage sessions to allow yourself a calm space to unwind, de-stress and let go of all the ‘small stuff’ (that drives you crazy) so that you are truly prepared in body, mind and spirit. When the big day arrives – ta dah! – you’ll be able to enjoy every moment of the day and let everybody see the most beautiful and radiant you – from the inside out!

I recommend you have weekly sessions in the weeks leading up to your big day as part of your personal preparation.

And if you see someone you love turning into bridezilla you might want to give them a pre-wedding gift!