Why Is Relaxing So Important, How Does Creativity Help

We all know that relaxation makes us and our bodies feel good whereas stress causes us to tense up and feel less that optimum. New scientific research shows just how important relaxing our bodies and minds is.

The emerging science of epigenetics shows that our genetic expression is not permanently fixed at birth, but actually evolves as we grow and learn. Environmental factors including nutrition, stress and our emotional responses can effect how our genes express themselves without changing the basic blueprint of our DNA. the genetic material in our cells.

When we are stressed our genes produce hormones associated with fight or flight like adrenalin and cortisol that are associated with aging and making us more susceptible to disease. When we are relaxed and feeling good our genes produce chemistry that boosts our immune system and helps with cellular repair and growth. 

A study looking at mindfulness practices like meditation, yoga, breath work, and other relaxation techniques, showed that we can actually “turn on” disease-preventing genes “turn-off” disease-causing genes through relaxing. Research on the energy psychology modality EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques), an easy to use self help strategy that combines western psychology with Chinese acupressure, found that an hour session of EFT lowered cortisol levels by 24 percent.

I’d like to add creativity to ways we can relax as well as develop more of our potential. Creativity is really a form of mindfulness since it puts us in the flow of the moment and feels good. Adult coloring books have been shown to reduce stress. I like doodling or free writing where you just let the words flow out of the the pen with no thought to what you are writing. Bringing play to whatever process you are working with and letting go of attachment to outcome is important.

Stress so often stems from the fact that our mind has leapt ahead with worry about the future or is chewing over something that happened in the past. When we do things that bring us into the moment we naturally relax. Find what works for you. Play with it and see if you don’t feel better.

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