Raïssa's Current Top 5 Physical Ways to Reset in the Studio
Ever feel like you're on a roll or have so much to get done that you can't stop for anything? I know I have, only later to feel my body fatigued, aching or even in pain.
Ever been struck with indecision or been stumped by a challenging problem? If you're like me and most people I’ve met, this's a situation you know intimately.
Making jewelry can be physically taxing on my body. It is easy to cross my legs, focus at one distance intensely for extended periods of time, hunch over and jut my head forward, and engage in daily repetitive motions with my arms and hands.
Keeping inspired and in-tune with my creative spark is also no small feat in this fast paced, over stimulated world.
My goal's to keep designing and making jewelry to provide you with a personal way to express yourself. In order for me to do that, I’ve had to dedicate resources to find ways to be more mindful in my practice; ways to expand my ‘toolbox.' This dedication is in hopes of keeping me working with focus while at the same time feeling good in my body.
My toolbox is much more full than it used to be and I’ve become a firm believer in a mindset that says, ‘a little bit can go a long way.’ I call it Self-Tuning. Taking 1-5 minutes interspersed throughout my day to reset has had a huge impact and is why today…
I’m excited to share with you my current TOP 5 SELF-TUNING TOOLS!
(Remember, if any cause you pain, STOP:-)
For those moments of indecision or challenge the following two are incredibly effective:
1: Focused, Intentional Breathing
There are endless breathing variations to explore. Here are some of my favorites:
- Extend exhales longer than inhales to calm central nervous system.
- Make audible buzzing/humming sounds in various pitches to wake up a bit. Note where you feel the vibrations within your body.
- Sit or stand with eyes closed and stretch breath — inhale past your habitual stopping point, gently draw in core muscles to expel breath completely.
2: Eye Stretches
Yes, eyes can be stretched too! These are an absolute favorite of mine.
- Move eyes clockwise as if going around a clock, looking to the farthest point of vision at 1, 2, 3 and so on. Switch and go counterclockwise. (Image above shows a snapshot of this.)
- Move eyes in diagonals, multiple times from upper right to lower left then the opposite direction upper left to lower right.
- Gently flicker you eyes from a near point to a far point, gaining focus at each point before shifting to the other.
For those moments when you have hunched for too long and overworked your hands:
3: Chest Openers
There are may versions of these but here are a couple I regularly practice:
- Clasp hands together behind back. Tweeze shoulder blades towards one another and gently lift hands away from back while reaching them down away from shoulders. Take a few expansive breaths and release. (Folding forward while doing this chest opener is also an option.)
- Go to a door jamb and place one hand along it. Walk forward a few steps until you feel your upper chest muscles lengthening. Stay for a few breaths before shifting to the other side.
4: Wrist / Hand / Forearm Stretches
There are many versions of these too…but a couple for you:
- Reach out through one arm, extending your hand out, palm skyward. Reach the heal of hand towards the floor. Bring the opposite hand to your fingers and flex them back towards your body. Stay for a few deep breaths.
- Bend at elbows and have hands up about shoulder height. Shake forearms and hands for about a minute, being as loose and jiggly as you can. (Stick with this!)
5: Seated Twist
- Sit at edge of chair with both feet grounded on the floor, inhale to sit up tall. Exhale, twist torso to one side. Stay for a few breaths and then switch to the other side.
Hope you enjoy. Please write below with any questions or comments that you may have. What works for you?
Thanks for reading!
PS: This topic is near and dear to my heart. I want nothing more than for all of you to be able to do what you are most passionate about in a way that is pain free. That is why some years ago I created a resource, Reset, to educate and promote Self-Tuning, Mindfulness & Prevention. For more detailed versions of many of the above top 5, go to this page today!