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What helps us stay centered: deep breath, laughter, and physical activity


In his TED talk, Leon Taylor suggests physical activity as an intervention to keep our stress from encroaching our mental health. His argument is well supported by science: When we move our body, it produces brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) that promotes neurogenesis in the hippocampus. Our body also generates more endorphins, which is also triggered by laughter. End results of physical activity? We feel refreshed and become resilient to stress immediately (endorphins) and in the long run due to the increased brain capacity to solve problems (BDNF).

What credited Leon's talk even more is his own life experience. He took himself out of depression through his favorite physical activity, diving. He also helped a high achiever, who was suffering from a bipolar disorder, overcome his illness through a regular running activity.

Leon thinks that even simple acts such as deep breathing or taking a short walk around the block would reduce our stress and keep ourselves centered. It sounds easy enough to do, doesn't it?

I'm going to leave you with a Tibetan proverb that resonates with me:

"The secret of living well and longer is: eat half, walk double, laugh triple, and love without measure."

(Image source: Media Assets Repository System)

#Stressmanagement

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