Why showers are not needed in your office.

While presenting the REAL LIFE YOGA sessions for a Leadership workshop, I was explaining how easily our office-yoga sessions could be included right before the start of a full-day program. Yet, the point that stroke me again as a key benefit for my prospect was not the one I expected: it was the “no-need-for-shower”!

I keep repeating this over and over again: "with our yoga methods adapted to the workplace and to any meeting or conference settings, there is no need to roll out yoga mats, no need to change clothes, not even to take a shower afterwards”. And this is, I believe, a pillar of corporate yoga as most of the time still, companies and event venues do not provide the infrastructure for physical workouts. And even if well-being measures at work are rightly so increasing, it is not necessary nor possible for every company to turn their workspace into a gym. So yes, it is logical to adapt the exercises to these places. And even more so, it is necessary to provide companies with services that respect their teams’ busy agenda. With services that make it, not only possible but, easier for them to experience the benefits of their session. Without adding more stress for taking time off lunch break or adding another rush between the meetings, the phone calls and the yoga session.

If well-being measures at work are increasing, it is not possible for every company to turn their workspace into a gym.

real-life-yoga-meghan-holmes-unsplash-corporate-wellness.jpg

If we are here to help business professionals manage their stress better, remove mental clutter and be in control of their emotions and their time, we shall do this from the start. From the very way we conceive and provide this service in their professional environment: truly integrated in real life and literally “off the mat”.  

This is article #4 of our 100-blog-post series. To keep in touch, receive our tips, videos and insights, sign up for our Newsletter and follow us on Youtube & LinkedIn

Stress management & productivity at your desk: on breathing (part 1).

All we need to start living a more sustainable and empowered business life is to breathe and to move consciously, with calm and awareness. This is what I demonstrated on CNNMoney Switzerland with Ana Maria Montego last week. And as simple as it might sound, breathing, moving and being aware of your self while you work and as you go through the day, will considerably improve your life on a physical, psychological and emotional level. This is what we help you with at REAL LIFE YOGA and today we will look at what makes breathing so powerful, giving you a first simple method to get you started.

Breathe to trigger your nervous system.

From all the physiological functions regulated by our autonomous nervous system, breathing is the only one that we can actively change to impact other autonomic functions such as our heart rate, and our mood. And because breathing allows us to switch on and switch off on command the para-sympathetic and sympathetic nervous systems, we have direct control over our physiological response to any stimuli and situations around us. How powerful is that! 

From all the physiological functions regulated by our autonomous nervous system, breathing is the only one that we can actively change to impact other autonomic functions and our mood.

Do you need to calm down before giving a speech? 

Then breathe through the left nostril (closing the right one with your right thumb, to switch on the para-sympathetic nervous system, which will trigger the relaxation response. 

When you need to relax, all you need is to breathe through the left.

When you need to relax, all you need is to breathe through the left.

Do you need to power up for your big day? 

Then breathe through the right nostril (closing the left with your right ring finger) to activate the sympathetic nervous system and release hormones such as adrenaline and noradrenaline in your body that will get you alert and ready for action.

For more tips and videos to help you be at your best in business life, check our Youtube channel and our website.

Source: The Science of Breathing, Yoga Journal, 2015.

The key to your productive afternoon is in the twist.

The afternoon is coming and your are looking for a quick and easy tip to avoid the midday slumber? Look no further, this short exercise will help you get your power back and even help you digest. So among all the methods we use in REAL LIFE YOGA, my tip for you today is a twist. And it can be done directly at your desk with whatever clothes you have on, and no matter what you ate just before. Here you go directly to the youtube video.

The spinal twist step by step:

1. Sit up straight, back of the chair behind you or to your right side, feet, knees and hips in one line. 

2. Inhale: take your right arm up and reach for the back of your chair.

3. Put your left hand on the outer edge of your right thigh to help you twist to the right side.

4. Twist from the bottom of the spine upwards, looking over your right shoulder last.

5. Breathe in your twist 5 more times. Inhale: lengthen through the spine, exhale: twist a little bit deeper to the right.

6. Breathe out and slowly come back to center. Repeat on the other side.

Why it works.

Twists have many benefits. They are wonderful and short ways to refresh your body by stimulating blood circulation and metabolism. Because you create a slight compression of the organs in the abdomen as you twist, fresh blood will flow to your organs and associated glands as you release the twist, helping remove toxins and bringing them plenty of oxygen for their good functioning. Also, twisting once or twice a day helps you keep your spine young, preserving its valuable range of motion with this simple movement, especially in the lower - thoracic and lumbar - parts of the spine that are less mobile.

When to use it. 

After lunch or breakfast to improve digestion. When you have been sitting too long and need an easy way to gather your energy and focus for the rest of the day.

For more tips and methods to help you be at your best in business life, visit www.reallifeyoga.ch.

The yoga tips I used for my first broadcast interview.

I was delighted and honoured to give my first broadcast interview about REAL LIFE YOGA and to discuss why awareness and simple methods to manage stress more sustainably directly at work, are so crucial today more than ever before in the corporate world. And since my job is to coach business professionals to be at their best, no matter what challenges they face, I used some of my yoga tips as I prepared myself to speak in front of their cameras. This is what I gladly share with you today.

Breathe, any way you need. Because breathing is such an amazing and powerful tool to use anytime and anywhere you like, I have implemented different breathing techniques in my mental and physiological preparation: as a wrote my notes, as I was waiting before entering the recording studio or even incognito in the make up room. Depending on how you would typically feel before such an exciting opportunity, you may want to use just one or several of the techniques I have described below. As always, be aware of how you and your body feel first to know what you need in this very situation.

Breathe out to clear your mind.

As you prepare your speech or your notes and want to make sure that you do not forget any important points there, use this breathing technique to clear your mind and focus better. For this, exhale forcefully through the nose while pulling your abdomen inward. The inhale remains passive so only focus on exhaling and moving your belly in at the same time. Repeat 30 times, exhaling once or twice per second.

Breathe inside your belly to calm down.

When you feel the peak of anxiety rising up, your heart pumping in your chest and your heart beat resonating in your head, take a moment to breathe in your belly. Put your right hand on your lower abdomen and take a few deep breaths here. By doing so, you will trigger a relaxation response in your nervous system and be able to calm yourself down within a few seconds.

Breathe forcefully to be alert and ready.

Do you want to share your message with confidence and conviction? Do you want to make a powerful impression with all the energy and presence you have within you? Then breathe in and out through the nose forcefully and at a faster rhythm (one complete breath within a second). As you do so, really make sure that you inhale and exhale as much air as you can in each of these short breaths. It should feel like you are pumping the air in and out of your system. Do this for 20 times and you will notice a great buzz of energy going through the body up to the head. Now you are fully awake and ready to roll.

 

Try these breathing methods and let me know how it goes for you. Do you need further guidance? Then reach out for a 30 min discovery call. Together we can take a closer look at the challenge you face in your business life and find the rights methods to help you handle them with calm and power.

The yoga method you will never forget once you tried it.

We all have our secret tips that help us feel better whenever we need. And there is one among the yoga methods we use in our REAL LIFE YOGA coaching that definitely remains in all minds and in all bodies: I am speaking of the eagle arms. They look funny for sure but once we’ve tried them and felt them, they become your best friend for releasing and preventing tension from building up in your back.

On top of being memorable for your mind and for your muscles, the eagle arms are the perfect way to release effectively and quickly tensions in your upper back stored in between the shoulder blades. This usually happens when you have been sitting for too long at your desk, maybe even cramping up your shoulders to your ears without noticing.

No matter if finding new ways to manage and reduce stress naturally in your business life has been your main concern lately or not. Just take 30 seconds to try this easy yoga posture. We promise, it won’t take you long and you can keep your clothes on, stay at your desk and remain comfortably seated in your chair. Ready? Here we go directly to the youtube video.

 The eagle arms step by step:

1. Sitting straight, open your arms to the sides, fingers pointing up and elbows bent.

2. Take the left upper arm on top of the right, hooking the elbows together.

3. Clasp hand palms or try to bring the back of your hands towards each other.

4. Move elbows up & down to find that juicy stretch between your shoulder blades.

5. Stay there and breathe deeply 5 times, letting go of the tension on the exhale.

6. Release slowly and roll your shoulders before repeating on the other side.

 

For more tips and methods to help you be at your best in business life, visit www.reallifeyoga.ch.