Midweek chill out
We are life coaches and financial coaches here at Living Money. We want to do what we can to help you (whether you are a client of ours or not) to be happy, wealthy and effective.
This isn't easy if you are stressed, so take a few moments out with our midweek chill out, a short piece of laughter, music and something to help you think, for a while, about something completely different.
(There is an explanation for the science behind the laughs at the end of this post.)
Laugh out loud
Not quite comedy, although the BBC’s video has some amusing shots.
This clip is more about the sense of joyful renewal as we leave Winter behind and head into Spring
Discover more at the BBC’s education website, Teach.
The magic of music
The lark is the most amazing bird.
From a great height, so high it is almost impossible to see, the skylark produces the most incredible song that echoes around the countryside. I heard (but didn’t see) my first lark of Spring at the weekend walking along the ridgeline.
Nicola Benedetti performs a beautiful version of Vaughn Williams’ celebration of this remarkable bird.
Something to think about
There are almost as many opinions about when Spring starts as there are days in Spring.
Different cultures, locations and scientific disciplines have different interpretations.
However, the equinox, which occurs today, 20th March at 21:58 UTC is often honoured as the start of Spring.
The equinox is the instant of time when the equatorial plane of the earth passes through the centre of the sun.
This happens in March and September and if you were standing on the Equator, the sun would be directly above you.
It is also when night and day are of equal, twelve-hour duration.
From here on the increasing length of the days and shorter nights become more noticeable.
In the Northern Hemisphere, the tilt of the Earth brings us significantly nearer the Sun and the days grow warmer as well as longer,
encouraging the rebirth of life that has lain dormant throughout winter – the phenomenon we know as Spring.
The science behind the laughs…
There is some good science behind all this. When you are in 'fight or flight' mode your adrenal glands secrete cortisol. This gives you the energy boost, reduced pain threshold and increased blood pressure to help you deal with the immediate situation. However, prolonged periods of high cortisol levels can have a distressing impact on your lifestyle and ability to perceive and understand your environment.
Cortisol release can be triggered by any number of stressful situations, including challenging work conditions, caffeine, a shortage of sleep, even travelling by train.
Researchers have found that laughter and music both help reduce stress hormones, hence our mid-week chill-out.
Seratonin is the neurotransmitter active in regulating your mood, appetite, sleep and memory. If cortisol is the stress hormone, then serotonin is the happy hormone!
Low levels of serotonin can result in feeling low, depression and anxiety. Keep serotonin levels up by eating bananas, dates, yoghurt, milk and seeds. Find the sun. Get a massage. Exercise and water are also important. Let your intuition tell you what your body needs to be happy and effective.
(With thanks to Amy Brann, neuroscientist and author)
Until next week…
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