Have you ever felt anxious?
How does it manifest in your body? Do any of the below symptoms sound familiar?
A twisting sensation in your gut.
An upward rush of energy.
Tightness in your chest.
Bodily pain, especially around neck and shoulders.
Paralysis or stuckness.
Anxiety affects different people in different ways and we can all agree that it's not pleasant.
If this is you, fear not! I have put together a selection of points that can help relieve anxiety and it's symptoms. This treatment "routine" is something we can bring our focus onto when anxiety flares up due to worry, stress, bad news or exciting news! Take the routine as a ritual, as a way of honouring yourself by giving to yourself the care and attention you need and deserve instead of trying to push it down with food, substances, meds, over-exercising or sleeping through the afternoon until the next day.
Touching ourselves in a therapeutic way is an ancestral natural instinct and very grounding. Have you ever banged your elbow against the door and you put your opposite hand over the elbow and somehow it felt a little better? We have the capacity to heal and our bodies know a fair bit about self-healing, self-regulation and regeneration. Why not use such abilities to our benefit? Here's how:
- sit in a comfortable position.
- take a deep breathe to simply say and acknowledge that "I'm here".
- massage these points for 1-2 minutes.
Yin Tang, also known as the Third Eye is, unsurprisingly, located between the eyebrows and is known to have a mentally stabilizing effect in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Using your index finger, gently massage this point in a circular motion for 1-2 minutes in order to help calm the spirit. This point is also really helpful for insomnia; laying quietly with your eyes closed, taking slow deep breaths and applying pressure to Yin Tang can help you to relax into sleep.
Spirit Courtyard. The Courtyard is known to be the entrance way to the traditional Chinese house and in parallel, this point could be said to be the “entrance” to the mind and spirit. It is located just above the hair line and pressing or lightly tapping this point can provide instant calming, soothing effects.
Spirit Gate. Apply pressure with your thumb at the point where your wrist forms a crease with your hand on the little finger side. This is an Earth point, the nature of which is stable and grounding so this point can help with regaining a sense of control when feeling anxious.
Inner Pass. Measure three finger widths up from the wrist in the centre of the arm and apply pressure with your finger to help relieve the tightness in the chest that very often accompanies anxiety.
Yellow Emperor is located near the ankle and traditionally is used as a point to ease gastro and abdominal issues, so if this is a feature of how anxiety manifests, there is an added element of relief to be gained. But when Yellow Emperor is used in conjunction with Inner Pass (above) it has a more profound effect on the chest and the nervousness that can sit within feelings of anxiety.
I'd love to know how this acupressure treatment works for you and what other tools have worked for you in the past.