I don’t usually recommend this technique to clients! But let’s look at how we can change our state of mind in a very quick and simple way without going to such extremes.
You will know about our fight, flight and freeze reaction which is activated when we feel in danger or stressed. The opposite to this response is the rest, digest and recover state, which is activated when we feel calm, relaxed, and safe. The vagal nerve is integral in this response – it contributes to our mood and can change our state of mind very quickly. Have you ever watched people as they throw themselves into icy water and come out feeling ecstatic and reborn? This is an excellent if not extreme way to activate the vagal nerve. If you’re not a lover of cold water then why not try another very simple and effective way to bring yourself back to a relaxed, calm state:
Breath in through the nose for the beat of 5
Hold that breathe for the beat of 2
Exhale through the mouth for 8
Repeat this 3 times and notice the difference.
By using the link below from Justin Caffery, you can learn how important the vagal nerve is, the role it plays in reducing anxiety and fear and some useful tools to use to stimulate it.
These techniques and others are used in hypnotherapy sessions to help clients who are dealing with chronic or acute anxiety or pain.