Anti-Stress Hacks: De-Stress By Shaking It Up!

Have you discovered the incredible mood-changing power of shaking your body? If not, you have to try this!

Shaking: A Simple Way to De-Stress

Why does shaking decrease stress?

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the main mechanism for stress and many of its symptoms is Liver Qi Stagnation. If you want to get a better idea of what Liver Qi Stagnation is, you can read this post, but the basics are very easy to understand. Stagnation just means being stuck. You probably know exactly what it’s like to feel stuck.

One of the best ways to get rid of that stuck feeling is to physically move, because when you move your body, you move your Qi. And shaking is an excellent way to move the Qi because it’s a very thorough way of moving your body – you can even get breathless in just a couple of minutes.

The evolutionary link between shaking and stress

There’s another reason that shaking can be even more effective than other forms of movement like jogging or dancing. Shaking is actually one of the physiological mechanisms that mammals use to recover from dangerous events.

Researchers into psychological trauma such as Peter Levine have done a lot of work on how physical shaking is used by wild animals after a traumatic event such as being chased or injured, and how that helps to prevent Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

There are a couple of reasons that we don’t tend to automatically shake to relieve the stress of scary situations. One is that the “dangerous” situations we face are usually not physically dangerous, so it doesn’t occur to us to use physical movement to shake it off. The other is that our conscious minds often get in the way of doing what our bodies need. We tend to keep ourselves tightly controlled, and so we miss out on some of our innate defense mechanisms against stress and trauma.

Shake It Off

Shaking is a great way to move your Qi, which helps you feel happier and more relaxed.

For this to work, the stress you’re facing doesn’t have to be physically dangerous, or even very serious. Any time you feel stuck or tense, moving your Qi will help you to feel better quickly, so use this technique to shake it off. That way, you can leave it behind and get on with your day, instead of carrying that tension around with you.

This technique is a great way to get quick relief from stress and frustration. It’s especially good for when you’re feeling frustrated, grumpy, and irritated by life. And, of course, if you are unfortunate to find yourself in a genuinely traumatic situation, let your body do what it needs to and shake till you feel calmer.

How to shake for stress relief:

Stand up and start shaking your body. Shake out your arms and legs. Take deep breaths and sigh out audibly on the exhale. Make any sounds that feel good. Move as intensely as feels good for 1-2 minutes and then see how you feel.

Yup, it’s that easy!

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Happy shaking! Remember, it won’t work unless you try it, so give it a go and leave me a comment to let me know how it works for you!

Your health ally,

Moss x

Moss Andrewes is an acupuncturist and practitioner of Traditional Chinese Medicine, specializing in women’s health and chronic illness. Originally from the UK and now residing in Canada, she is a writer, speaker, and event organizer, focusing on health, sustainable living and community. Her lifelong passion for making the world a happier, healthier place has led her through many adventures, including off-grid sustainable living, disaster relief, and various community health projects. She currently lives in Winnipeg, Manitoba, with her partner and two cats.

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