Are you worried about Covid-19, the Coronavirus? You are right to be concerned, but that worry might make you more susceptible to getting sick. Instead, take appropriate care, while supporting yourself so that you do not get sick.
Stress may be the largest factor in determining if you get sick. When you become stressed, our immune system becomes less able to protect you. The stress hormone, corticosteroid, decreases, even suppresses the immune system by lowering the number of lymphocytes (white blood cells needed to fight off disease) in your system.
Stress, worry, anxiety, etc. lowers the immune system by raising your blood pressure, heart rate, breath rate, and decreases your digestion. If you remain in a state of stress for too long and your brain begins to rewires itself to a state of stress, known as chronic stress.
Wash Your Hands! Use soap and warm water. Soap is one of the best defenses we have against getting sick.
Deep Breathing. The longer you exhale, the more signals your brain receives to initiate the parasympathetic nervous system, the Calm Brain response. When the Calm Brain is turned on, the Stress Response is turned off. This causes the heart rate and blood pressure to lower. There are a couple of ways to turn on the Calm Brain through the breath:
- 4:6 Count Breath – inhale for a count of four and exhale for a count of six
- Om on the Exhale – try it. The mantra Om is the primordial sound, said to be the sound of everything at once. In addition to the length of the exhale when you use a sound, Om may deactivate the limbic brain.
- So-Ham with Peace – place your hands on your heart, invite a connection with peace (a feeling, image, memory, etc.), and as you exhale, use the soothing sounds of so-ham (pronounced so-humm).
Rest! Sleep and rest cannot be underestimated. When you sleep, your immune system releases proteins that help you sleep and fight infections. Not enough sleep and your ability to fight disease and recover from illness is reduced. One of the best ways to get rest is through the practice of Yoga Nidra. It is the perfect middle of the day respite.
Meditation. Manage and deregulate the stress response through the practice of meditation. The hardest part of meditation is learning how to sit for meditation. The mind wanders and gets stuck on worries and to-do lists. That is what the LifeForce Yoga Chakra Clearing Meditation is for! It gives the mind a bone, providing space for you to connect with your innate wholeness.