By Omada Health - Contributor

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Calm holiday nerves with these five-second tension tamers

December 15, 2017

Parties, shopping, persistent relatives, lots of leftovers — the holiday season can add up to serious stress.

Omada Health, a breakthrough online program that inspires healthy habits you can live with long-term, want to help you keep your stress manageable this holiday season with five easy breathing exercises.

Each only takes about five seconds and will help you tame your tension so you can have the happiest holiday season possible. Get ready to relax. Start by taking a few deep breaths, then try these mini-moves.

Mini-move 1: Eyebrow bounces

Raise and lower your eyebrows 2-3 times. Feeling stressed or worried can cause you to knit your brow without even realizing it. “Bouncing” your brows a few times helps relieve that tension.Mental overload can result in tension in the arms and shoulders. Rolling back your shoulders will bring some relief.

Mini-move 2: Gentle head rolls

Lower your chin to your chest and very slowly roll your head from one shoulder to another. Studies have shown that when mental workload increases, the cervical area becomes tight. This move loosens things up by increasing blood flow to your neck muscles.

Mini-move 3: shoulder lifts

Inhale and lift your shoulders up toward your ears, then exhale and draw your shoulder blades down and back toward each other.

 

Mini-move 4: stick our your tongue

Open your mouth wide and stick out your tongue really, really far. Emotions like anger and stress can cause clenching of the jaw and muscles around the mouth. This lion’s break yoga pose counteracts that clenching.

Mini-move 5: Eagle arms

Hold your arms out to the sides at shoulder height with your palms facing forward, then squeeze your shoulder blades together and draw your arms back to stretch your chest. Use this simple move to ease tightness in your chest brought on by stress or other negative emotions.

 

About Omada Health

One out of three Americans will die prematurely from a condition that’s mostly related to lifestyle, habit, or circumstance. These are conditions that pills and procedures can control but not fix, like type 2 diabetes or heart disease. Omada Health uses behavior science to help people change their habits, improve their health and reduce their risk of chronic disease.

Omada Health is a covered benefit for select Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota health plans.  If you are a Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota member and wish to see if you have Omada Health as a covered benefit, call the number on the back of your member ID card to speak to someone who can review your health plan benefits.

Don’t wait until the New Year to make your health a habit. Learn more about Omada Health today.

Editor’s note: A previous blog post shared how Omada Health helped a Blue Cross employee on her journey toward better health.

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