Dec 19, 2013 5:21 PM by Keli Moore, KSBY News

Have a stress-free holiday season

This time of year we often put off the things that help reduce stress, like exercise, because time is limited. We have holiday preparations, travel, and a million things on the "to do" list, which makes it so we often don't get enough sleep.

A Central Coast man said we can easily reduce holiday stress, and it only takes a few seconds.

"Taking a deep breath is the easiest and simplest way to handle stress because it slows everything down," explained Russ Brown.

Brown retired from Cal Poly in 1990. He was the Dean of Students there. Today, he shares a practice.

"You can even do it when you are driving," he said.

Brown spends his mornings teaching Tai Chi and meditation at the YMCA in San Luis Obispo.

"Tai Chi is described as moving meditation and meditation is stilling the mind and the body follows," Brown explained.

Both practices that can help us handle holiday stress. If you don't have time to take a class, here are a few more tips: be present, have gratitude, and be kind.

"We think about what we should have done and what we need to do, and we are not here and that makes us less efficient because part of our energy is out there and part of our energy is in here," said Brown.

See if you can cultivate more intentional thoughts, he says. Be childlike and look for silver linings.

"A characteristic of us in the west is that we have to hurry up and relax," said Brown.

So take your time, and have a stress-free holiday!

For more information on classes at the YMCA, click here.



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