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A Soul smile is a moment of connection with your deepest, inner YOU.

It also stimulates a flood of healthy hormones from your nervous system that helps to reduce symptoms of stress and create well-being and happiness.

More than this – it gives you perspective.

As our human family continues to navigate through the challenges of a pandemic, we do need to be aware of the moments (or more) of stress and worry.

Stress, fear and worry are powerful emotions. But they are emotions that keep you stuck in an emotional loop by continuing the loop. Like a hamster running endlessly on an exercise wheel.

Most of the time, we don’t even know we’re in an emotional loop. Stress can be insidious, habitual and even contagious.

A powerful way to break the loop, is a soul smile. And all it takes is a moment!

CONSCIOUSLY creating moments of connection, regularly, will help to put the stress and worry into proper perspective.

First, though, let’s raise our awareness about how stress shows up that you may not even be aware of.

Up to 90% of visits to the doctor are because of conditions related to stress. Yet only 3% of those appointments were made because the patient was concerned about stress!

This culture we’ve created of ignoring symptoms of stress has created a number ONE health problem. It’s an epidemic worse than the pandemic we are currently experiencing.

One of the effects of the COVID19 pandemic is that it is amplifying what the World Health Organization had already declared a few years ago: Stress is the epidemic of the 21st Century.

The more ways you have of relieving stress in your self-care tool kit, the better your health, well-being and LIFE will be.

So let’s take a look at some of these symptoms that you might be ignoring. As you raise your awareness of the symptoms of stress, you are more empowered to use an intervention before the stress leads to a serious health condition.

Here are some of the symptoms you’ll see in your BODY when you’ve been overloading your systems with stress hormones.

  • Why should I care about Stress Relief? Headaches for one.Headaches
  • Frequent infections
  • Tight muscles
  • Muscle twitches
  • Fatigue
  • Skin irritations
  • Breathlessness

 

Here’s what can be going on in your MIND when you have been stressed-out for a while:

  • Worrying
  • Muddled thinking
  • Impaired judgement
  • Nightmares
  • Indecision
  • Negativity
  • Hasty decisions

 

EMOTIONS also take a hit with prolonged stress:

  • Why should I care about Stress Relief? Depressed, and feeling aloneLoss of confidence
  • More fussy
  • Irritable
  • Depression
  • Apathy
  • Alienation
  • Apprehension

 

And here are some changes in BEHAVIOR you may notice:

  • Trouble sleepingAccident prone
  • Loss of appetite
  • Loss of sex drive
  • Drinking more
  • Insomnia
  • Restlessness
  • Smoking more

Here is a link to our 5 minute stress test where you can gather more specific information about how you are responding with stress symptoms you may not be aware of.

Take the Quiz

And what about your SPIRIT? How do you make your soul smile?

When was the last time you felt joy? or deep peace? or happiness for no particular reason? or Bliss or Gratitude, just because? When did you last sing or dance?

Prolonged stress robs you of vitality, health, well-being, happiness, joy, fun and so much more …

So SMILE at yourself for those moments when symptoms of stress become stronger than happiness. Forgive your forgetfulness and reach for something that makes your soul smile.

To get you started on ways to make your soul smile, here are some of my favorites:

  • take a deep, slow breath; take several deep, slow breaths
  • hum a favorite tune
  • I tap my favorite Tibetan bowl (One of the things the sound of a Tibetan singing bowl does is to reset the body to its natural state of harmony.)
  • sigh 2 or 3 long, vocalized sighs to stimulate the relaxation response
  • admire the sunset
  • admire the sunset with a friend or loved one
  • sing ahhhhh for a few moments, while focusing your awareness on one thing you are grateful for.
  • smell a flower
  • stand in the grass with bare feet
  • catch a snowflake – or raindrop – on your tongue
  • gaze at the clouds as they float by. What do the shapes of the clouds remind you of?
  • plant a seed
  • giggle with your children

 

I encourage you to have a list of your favorite soul-smile moments. Write your list on sticky notes. Put this list on the fridge, the bathroom mirror, kitchen cupboard, computer screen or any place where you will see them often.

Use your soul-smile moments whenever you feel a sense of overwhelm beginning, so you can return to sharing your passion and gifts with those who need them.