According to the American Institute of Stress, 77% of American adults regularly experience stress-induced physical symptoms, with another 73% experiencing psychological symptoms. The big 2 causes are money and work, with 3 out of every 4 Americans experiencing stress citing one of these as their #1 gripe.
For many, feeling anxious occurs with alarming regularity and sometimes, feeling overly-stressed can literally feel debilitating. Does this sound familiar?
Do you have days when work feels like a monumental task that cannot be conquered, or your busy schedule at home feels daunting, maybe you experience difficult to tackle family anxiety? Then it’s important to learn how to deal with stress because if you are unable to manage it, you can feel overburdened and become vulnerable to turning to drugs or alcohol as coping mechanisms.
Of course, there is a way out. Stress shouldn’t be insurmountable and everyone experiences periods in their lives when there are difficult situations to deal with. You need to take time out regularly, be sure to have a support network around you to advise or just to listen when things get too much and it’s vital to do those things that give you pleasure.
There are quick wins too, you could do some deep breathing or listen to ambient sounds, perhaps practice some yoga. Or at times when you need to calm yourself fast, why not try Japanese Shiatsu massage?
Japanese Shiatsu massage is well-known to reduce feelings of anxiety. It encourages a feeling of well-being by applying pressure in the right places because it uses “QI”, this pushes energy into the body. Not only is Shiatsu good for stress and tension, it’s also good for encouraging lymphatic drainage and easing muscular pain.
Most people think that Japanese Shiatsu massage is an all-over body experience but actually, the hand is an excellent example of how Shiatsu can be used quickly to reduce stress. The hand has a multitude of pressure points, when the correct pressure is applied, it can work wonders.
Before we go on to how to use Japanese Shiatsu massage in the hand, let’s look at what each pulse point does and where to apply pressure for certain emotions.
- The thumb is good for reducing anxiety and fighting against worrisome thoughts
- The index finger is where you can conquer feelings of fear
- The middle finger is the area to apply pressure to when you feel angry
- The ring finger is good for decision making. It’s also the finger for fighting off depression
- The little finger calms anxiety and when you need to feel confident in a situation, it’s the area of the hand where you should apply pressure
Use the above points and apply pressure for each individual stressful feeling. Then, give your hand an all-over Shiatsu massage.
The Technique for Japanese Shiatsu on the Hand
At the center point in your palm there’s the Pericardium 8 which is the area known as the Palace of Anxiety by acupuncturists. It is placed approximately one inch under your forefinger and middle finger, if you draw a line to meet in the middle. This is where you can encourage better blood flow into your major organs and improve positive energy. If you feel particularly stressed or you find yourself in an uncomfortable situation, place your right thumb onto the Pericardium 8 on your left hand. Close your hand around your thumb and hold while counting to ten. Then, switch to the other hand and repeat.
Next, pull your fingers of your right hand gently backwards and hold for five seconds before gently releasing them. Then, stroke the inside of your left hand palm with your right hand vigorously, for twenty seconds. Turn your hand over so the back of your hand is facing upwards and with your other hand, massage in circular motions for about 30 seconds. You can repeat the Shiatsu massage again on your other hand as required.
You could add some aromatherapy essential oils to your hand to increase the benefits of your experience. You should feel calmer and better focused at the end of your hand massage.
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