We live in a world where we are constantly bombarded with information, be it 24 hour news on TV or on our phones, which are more power in computing terms than the most advanced IBM mainframe of 30 years ago, we get a stream of texts, emails, Facebook notifications to twitter and on it goes. You can add into this doing all the tasks that other people used to do for you. Going on holiday? You went to the travel agent and they sorted it out for you. Need to do some banking? do it online etc, etc.
A lot of this is supposed to be liberating but in effect actually creates stress that wasn’t there previously and tends to eat into the time you have to relax. Our brave new world where multi tasking is king we are setting ourselves up for a situation where we can’t think clearly. This multi tasking, which is actually more likely to be doing several things less well, increases the levels of cortisol and adrenaline in our bodies and results in a lack of clarity in our thinking. The stress it creates then pushes us more towards a sympathetic state, running away from a lion, rather than a para-sympathetic state, eating a nice meal.
All of this tends to mean that we end up feeling like there aren’t enough hours in the day.
It is for this reason that we tend to place a big emphasis on helping get you breathing well as a primary part of any rehab work that we do. If you are feeling constantly stressed then you aren’t in the best place to recover from an injury, or simply daily life for that matter. If we spend time on getting you breathing well we can have a huge impact on your ability to relax and therefore your ability to recover.
This fatigue that accompanies this stress often leaves people feeling like they don’t have time for the rehab work that is an integral part of of their recovery. “How am I supposed to fit this in, I simply don’t have time” is something I often hear and one of the reasons I suggest that any exercises are done whilst watching the TV.
With these constant thoughts that we need to be doing something or several things we rarely spend time sitting quietly and switching off from the noise.
Dan John talks about a compass of work, rest, play, pray rather than north, east, south and west. Work, rest and play are quite obvious in many ways but pray is less obvious as it doesn’t simply mean praying rather it is about investing in some of this quiet time on your own.
Where we can have a big impact is in this quiet time. Meditation is something that we tend to not do in our western society, we’re too busy, it’s too hard, I need to learn how to do it. None of these or the many others are true and you really don’t need to learn how to meditate.
This brings us back to the emphasis on breathing in our rehab.
We really do place a big deal on breathing as it makes such a difference and we can tie this with getting some quiet time.
How do we do this? The time that we spend on breathing and getting this right has a big impact on how they feel. Because of this we recommend setting aside 10-15 minutes where you just concentrate on your breathing.
During this time try this;
How does all this help you create more time?
In setting aside this time to focus on your breathing we create a situation where rather than increasing the levels of adrenaline and cortisol it will decrease them. You will be calmer and be able to think more clearly and as a result you’ll get things done faster.
The act of setting aside specific slot each day to day this is also quite liberating as you are no longer thinking about when you will be able to do, you are simply going to do it at 19:00 every day (or whenever you choose). The same goes for all the other parts of the compass. Work obviously takes care of itself but rest and play are something we have a lot of control over and doing things like switching the TV off 30 minutes earlier every night means you get to bed earlier. Making sure you catch up with friends regularly has been shown, especially amongst men, to have huge benefits to how we feel.
Setting aside specific times for the likes of exercise, meeting friends, time for yourself tends to free up time rather than restrict the amount of time that you have. Plus the better you get at it the more time you seem to have. The trick is to try to keep things in balance so that if you are going to be busy at work don’t let it reduce the time for the other areas and similarly on the other areas.
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