Stress Reduction

Updated: Apr 25, 2020

“If you are in a bad mood go for a walk.If you are still in a bad mood go for another walk.”



Stress reduction techniques help decrease high levels of anxiety and decreases the irritability of the sympathetic nervous system.  It also stimulates HCL acid production in the stomach, helps release bile in the gallbladder and release digestive enzymes in the pancreas. A simple technique has been adapted from The King Method, TKM, which first originated from Japan, originally called Jin Shin Jyutsu. Gently hold left thumb and index finger pads together with the palm of your right hand. (Right palm over two left fingers)

Sit in a comfortable position.  Relax.

Gently hold left thumb and index finger pads together with the palm of your right hand. (Right palm over two left fingers)

Roll your head a few times to relax the muscles in your neck. 

Breathe deeply and slowly – in through the nose and, let it fill you up.  Then out through your mouth. This is also referred to diaphragmatic breathing used commonly in specific exercises such as Tai Chi, Qigong, and Yoga.

Repeat these deep breathing exercises 5-10 times or more depending upon your level of stress or anxiety.

Then, visualize a spiritual meditation or imagine in your mind a peaceful place that you have been to – maybe a vacation spot, a wonderful childhood memory, ocean side, beach, mountains.  “Remember” that place with all of your senses: See the surroundings; Hear the sounds; Feel, Smell and Touch with your mind.  For example, experience this in your mind in your spiritual meditation or if the place that you imagine is the beach, then:  See the ocean and the sand and the seagulls. Feel the sand squishing through your toes as you walk, and the warm sun rays touching your body, and the breeze blowing through your hair.  Smell the ocean air, and taste the salt water on your tongue. Focus on this in your mind for 3-10 minutes.

If you practice this four times a day (before meals and at bedtime), you will greatly reduce your emotional stress during the day and relax the sympathetic nervous system.  You will also be able to sleep better and longer at night. Practicing this technique on a regular basis, initially, will allow you to be able to recall it more easily so that you can utilize it at any given time when you may find yourself in a stressful situation.  All you need to do is take a quiet moment alone for 3-10minutes to go through the technique, and then return to your situation in a better frame of mind and more relaxed.

Adapted from Wm. Lee Cowden, MD