Are you easily stressed? Do you feel tired a lot? Do you often feel under the weather?
Living in London has the many benefits of being a rich melting pot of diversity and culture. The city creates choices and many opportunities. However, city life is fast-paced with high stress levels that go way beyond what is often manageable. Anxiety, insomnia and depression are on the rise.
The Government Health & Saftey Executive have conducted a study showing that in 2014/15, stress accounted for 35% of all work related ill health cases. 43% of all working days were lost due to ill health. The medical profession recognise the link between mind and body and the importance of positive emotional wellbeing. This is reflected in a rapidly growing interest and availability in treatments such as reiki, yoga and meditation classes, which are all about restoring and revitalising health through relaxation.
What does stress do to the body?
Stress triggers the adrenals to secrete the highly active hormones of adrenaline and cortisol, which put the body into “fight or flight” mode. If you find that you suffer from periodic bouts of insomnia, or you experience tense muscles, this can signify adrenaline drive, where the body doesn’t “switch off” the adrenalin.
Over time, this depletes the nervous system and plays havoc with the immune system, digestion and the ability to wind down and relax. When we are in fight or flight mode, the digestion and immune systems shut down, as they are not as vital in an emergency. Your body doesn’t differentiate between real danger or having a stressful day.
Taking time out to positively manage stress and increase wellbeing is key to replenishing energy levels and improving health and wellbeing.
Reiki – a relaxing treatment to counteract stress.
One of the most relaxing treatments you can experience is Reiki healing. It is a gentle therapy that works with the energetic field of the body by directing healing energy. If the idea of healing seems like an abstract concept and perhaps hard to grasp, the knowledge that all human beings possess an innate healing mechanism, which is our immune system, is a reminder that we have an in-built intelligence that wants to repair and renew cells and to efficiently eliminate invaders and “foreign bodies” as part of our defence system. Relaxation and rest are vital elements that help this system to work effectively.
Reiki is an ancient healing practice that originated in Tibet and was rediscovered by Dr Mikao Usui in Japan in the 1920’s. The word Reiki is Japanese and means Universal energy, which is the vital life force energy that is infused in the air that we breathe. This life force energy nourishes our immune system and every cell in our body vibrates and emits a frequency that emanates out into the aura creating an energy field that surrounds the physical body. When our immune system is healthy, we feel strong, vibrant and alive and emanate positive energy. When we are stressed or unhappy our immune system becomes depleted and we succumb more easily to illness and disease. Stress and tension affect every cell in the body, so our health is reflected in our energy field.
Receiving a Reiki Treatment
Reiki healing is a gentle and tranquil full body treatment that is received fully clothed, lying down on a treatment table. The healing energy is a fine vibrational frequency directed through the hands that are placed on the body or in the energy field, positively affecting the physical and subtle energy fields of the body. It can be felt as warm, sometimes cool, radiating, tingling and calming energy.
The resonance of the energy allows the mind to slow down and relax, shifting from the stressor dominance of the sympathetic nervous system, to the relax, rest and replenish aspect of the parasympathetic nervous system, thus initiating the innate healing of our immune system.
With such a deep relaxation response and calming effect, Reiki can help to alleviate pain, reduce tension in muscles and help release mental and emotional stress. It raises and refreshes the spirit and provides a deep sense of peace and calm that helps to restore a positive mind and outlook, making the treatment a good choice for helping to cope with stress levels.
Reiki is a healing system that is non-denominational and so anyone can receive a treatment and it also complements any allopathic or holistic treatments being undertaken. To receive a treatment is to take time out to stop, rest and recalibrate on a level that harmonises mind, body and spirit.
Florentina Lam Clark – Massage Pracitioner, Reiki Master and Yoga Teacher.