4 Easy Exercises to Regulate Your Nervous System When You Need a Break

Our nervous system literally impacts every single thing we do. It impacts our ability to communicate, to do our work, to think, & to connect with other people.

Inevitably, we all have times where our nerves get the best of us.

~ Maybe you get stuck in cycling thoughts or critical thinking.

~ Perhaps you're in a conversation & realize that you feel stuck, blank, or frozen.

~ Maybe you are nervous about an an upcoming event & feel agitated, anxious, or jittery.

Of course, there are various reasons why we might feel dis-regulated. Some of these are a normal part of being human, while others may be the result of trauma or conditioning.

Whatever the reason, it's good to have tools to help support your system! From those that you can do in the moment (& are easy to hide) - to those that you can do in the car or in short periods.

Below are 4 easy exercises to help you regulator in the system when you just need a break.

1. Remind Yourself That This Will Pass.

You'll know you've become dis-regulated when you find yourself in one of the following scenarios.

  1. Fight: you're feeling overwhelmed in anger and desire to fight or explode.

  2. Flight: you're feeling anxious, ruminating in thoughts, or have an overwhelming urge to get away or crawl out of your skin

  3. Freeze: you've gone completely blank. You might even feel like your brain doesn't work, it's foggy, or that you're not able to speak or move

  4. Fawn: you become hyper-focused on the other person and how to make it good for them. Or you become submissive, saying yes because you think you should, disregarding your own needs, or feeling you you don't matter.

Here's the thing, when it comes to regulating your nervous system… It comes down to your nervous system. This means that regulation can only happen as quickly as your system is able to regulate. If you 'fight' yourself (e.g. Like getting angry at your self for not being different) chances are it will only make things worse.

Instead remind yourself that this will pass. This is not forever.

This will give your system a chance to regulate & you an opportunity to support it.

(Check out 'How Radical Permission Unlocks Our Ability Authentically Express Ourselves & be Heard')

2. Orient

As animals, we naturally orient all the time. Anytime we arrive in a new scenario or situation we naturally scan the environment, take it into our senses, & ensure there are no threats. This is a biological & evolutionary process that connects to the oldest & most primitive parts of our brain.

To orient, first slow down.

  • Orient through sight: Notice what you see & take in your environment though your eyes.