Posts tagged with "calm"

HEY VIOLET debut new video for “CLOSE MY EYES”

Fresh off a headline mini tour of the U.S., Hey Violet premiere the video for their new track Close My Eye today on Vevo. Watch it HERE. Shot in Los Angeles, the video was directed by Marcella Cytrynowicz who also lensed the video for the bands recent single Better By Myself.

Close My Eyes, which was written by Hey Violet with Sean Kennedy, Tim Anderson, and Aron Forbes (the latter two who co-produced), is the second of four new tracks the band is set to release throughout the spring and summer. The first, Better By Myself, was released in April, along with an official video that can be watched HERE. Idolator called Better By Myself as catchy as it is relatable, while Celeb Mix says the song’s mid-tempo beat and addictive chorus will leave the listener singing [it] all day. Watch Hey Violet perform Better By Myself live at Capitol Studios HERE.

Close My Eyes is essentially about living in a fantasy land, says front woman Rena Lovelis. It’s about the idea of still wanting to be with an ex who has already moved on. There’s definitely a level of denial that goes into being in that sort of headspace because you’re basically rejecting the present reality and not allowing yourself to move forward. The song sounds very calm and chill but in the lyrical content there’s an air of tension because of that refusal to accept things as they are.

Hey Violet’s 2017 debut album From the Outside featured the singles Guys My Age, which has amassed over 250 million global streams, Break My Heart, and Hoodie which is approaching 200 million streams. The album racked up critical praise, including accolades from The New York Times, which called it one of this year’s best and most provocative pop albums. Stereogum noted that it has plenty of attitude thanks to Lovelis vocal and lyrical presence, and NYLON declared, I challenge you to find a debut album as explosive and technicolored as Hey Violet’s From The Outside(the album) pulses with cheeky hooks and middle fingers to the status quo. Lead singer Rena Lovelis’ voice is arena-shaking. You’re in for one hell of a ride.

Over the past few years, Hey Violet, which is Rena Lovelis, her sister Nia Lovelis (drums), and Casey Moreta (lead guitar) have steadily built an engaged fanbase with their powerful, immaculately crafted alt-pop songs. Guys My Age was named one of the Best Songs of 2016 by The New York Times, who called it teen-pop’s revenge: an urgent dark song about sexual rebellion and one of the 20 Best Songs of 2016 by V Magazine. In 2017, Hey Violet was also nominated for an iHeart Radio award for Best Underground Alternative Band, dubbed an Artist Primed For A Breakout by Billboard, and named Artist To Watch by The Guardian, PopCrush, and more. The band has racked over half a billion streams worldwide, sold out their North American headline tour and performed on both The Late Late Show With James Corden and Late Night With Seth Meyers.

Photo Credit: Valentina Cytrynowicz

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The Midday Slump

5 Tips to Get Through Your Midday Slump

We have all felt it. After lunchtime, you’re lethargic, tired, and constantly checking the clock waiting for the day to be over.

But, fear not! Your day will no longer be ruined by the afternoon lull. Here are some quick tips to avoid the midday slump and allow you to end your day rejuvenated!

Spend 5 Minutes in Nature

According to a study published in the Journal of Positive Psychology in 2019, just 5 simple minutes sitting in nature, improves moods, decreases negative feelings and increases your sense of being awe and wonder at being a part of something bigger than yourself. If you have more time, combine being in nature with exercise. This can include hiking of simply taking a walk through the park lined with trees. This can reduce your heart rate and improve your ability to recover from stressful events.

Bring the Outdoors In

Feeling overwhelmed and can’t leave the building? Hang paintings of nature scenes on the walls, look out a window or a nature scene on your video device. It seems that even the picture of nature had the potential to reduce feelings of stress.

Break Out That Adult Coloring Book

Can’t absorb any new information? Take a break and take out the adult coloring book you have not taken the time to use. This distraction gives the brain the space it needs to tackle the problem while you focus on the joys of choosing the colors that make you feel better. Pro tip: Choose yellow and other bright colors if you need a pick me up.

Incorporate Natural Mid-Afternoon Boosts

Grab some green tea, it is high in antioxidants, contains a small amount of caffeine and also has an ingredient that can help create a sense of calmness. If you combine this with a little aromatherapy, either peppermint or lemon to quick lift or lavender to keep the calm going, you might find yourself feeling better after a quick 10 minute break.

Quick Exercises to Do At Your Desk

Here are 2 quick exercises that helps to release stress, restore a sense of calm while improving moods. Do any exercise that helps bring the heart rate up a little bit to get blood pumping while also releasing the energy of frustration. First, so some quick tricep extensions using a chair. Then follow with a stretch that helps to relieve the tension. Shrug shoulders up to ear and gentle rotate forward then backwards. Follow this with an open stance arms open wide and slightly raised as if to open myself up to receive warmth, love and support, then simply cross your arms around your shoulders and give yourself a hug. Cross your arms until you feel the muscles in the upper back gentle stretch and start relieving some of that built up tension. After all, we do tend to carry a lot of stress in the upper back and neck. Bonus, hugs help to relieve stress and improve moods.

Laugh & Breathe

It is as simple as laughing. It decreases cortisol levels and improves moods. A simple way to watch a funny clip or even more simple, record a baby’s laughter and listen to it. That sound of pure joy and wonder can bring a smile back to your face and do wonders for your mood. Lastly, practice stopping and breathing. 4 counts in, hold for 4 and release for 4. Do this about 4 times and feel the stress slowly ebb away.

About Eudene Harry MD

Eudene Harry is the medical director for Oasis Wellness and Rejuvenation Center, a wellness practice devoted to integrative holistic care. She is a veteran physician with over 20 years of experience. Dr. Harry earned her medical degree and performed her residency at Thomas Jefferson University.

Dr. Harry is the author of three books designed to empower the individual to get started on their path to optimal health. She has published extensively on the topics of reducing stress, healthy lifestyle choices, and regaining youthfulness. Her most recent book, Be Iconic: How to be Healthy and Sexy at Any Age is now available on Amazon. She regularly contributes to television and radio shows nationwide.

Connect with Dr. Harry on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. To learn more about Dr. Harry please visit, www.drharrymd.com.

Ultimate Guide to Yoga Therapy

Yoga therapy represents a new approach to mental health that seeks to alleviate emotional pain and restore well-being through a series of meditative practices that involve both the body and mind.

Over the last decades, researchers and mental health professionals have realized what Hindu monks have been teaching for thousands of years – a holistic approach to psychological and physical health is the key to balance and well-being.

Yoga – which is the foundation of yoga therapy – is an extremely complex spiritual tradition that has a history of roughly five thousand years, rich literature, and clear practice guidelines.

Luckily, over the years, practitioners have simplified this approach and made it accessible to anyone who’s interested in self-exploration and self-growth.

Yoga Therapy: What is it?

Considered both an art and a discipline, yoga is an ancient Indian practice characterized by meditation and physical activity, which can improve the body’s flexibility, reduce stress, and cultivate an overall state of health and well-being.

Yoga therapy represents a collection of principles, techniques, and practices derived from Hindu philosophy and adapted to clinical settings. By using meditation, breathing techniques, and body poses, this approach aims to improve our overall health and promote a state of calm and well-being.

According to a 2013 study [1], yoga therapy helps people with mental illness by cultivating a state of calm, increasing awareness and focus, promoting acceptance and adaptability, and cultivating a sense of security.

Yoga Therapy Theory

In Sanskrit (a language of ancient India), yoga means union. In other words, yoga therapy promotes an integrative and holistic [2] approach to mental health.

The union that yoga therapists and practitioners often mention is that between body, mind, and spirit. Yoga teachings stipulate that once we unite these three fundamental aspects of human experience into one element, we can reach a state of balance and health on all levels.

Some practitioners go so far as to believe that spiritual enlightenment and true unity can only be achieved in India, the birthplace of Yoga.

However, this doesn’t mean that yoga – as a series of health-promoting practices – can’t be effective in other parts of the world. In fact, countless practitioners have successfully promoted and implemented this approach all over the globe.

How Does Yoga Therapy Suggest the Mind Works?

In yoga therapy, the relationship between body, mind, and spirit represents a fundamental element that can serve as an explanatory model for the cause of physical and mental illness and also provide a pathway to balance and healing.

We all strive, more or less consciously, to free ourselves from the limited notion of what we are or, more precisely, what we commonly believe we are. In broad lines, we tend to identify with our body, mind, possessions, relationships, social status, bringing all these elements into one comprehensive picture we call ‘life.’

But these mental constructs are merely shadows of the truth that lies within ourselves; a truth that’s often hard to understand because of ignorance, narrow-mindedness, or lack of self-awareness.

By taking a holistic approach to health, yoga therapy seeks to restore balance and well-being through a series of physical, mental, and spiritual practices.

Read more about yoga therapy HERE.

Gisele Bundchen overcame panic attacks

Over 40 million adults in the U.S. suffer from anxiety and panic disorders. And as privileged as they are, celebrities are no exception when it comes to panic attacks. Whether it’s a one-time event or something they consistently struggle with, dealing with a panic attack is never easy. Most recently, in the media and her new book, Gisele Bundchen described the debilitating panic attacks she experienced when she was younger and how they almost led her to suicide. Gisele is not the only celeb who has confessed to former or current panic attacks. Others include Lena Dunham, Caitlyn Jenner, Emma Stone, Ellie Goulding, Amanda Seyfried, and John Mayer. We turned to New York City-based neuropsychologist and Teaching Faculty Member at the prestigious Columbia University Teacher’s College for some insight on what average Joe and Janes can to overcome panic attacks. The good news is, recovery is possible does not take an A-listers budget.

What is a panic attack?

Panic attacks typically begin suddenly, without warning. They can strike at any time — when you’re driving a car, at the mall, sound asleep or in the middle of a business meeting. You may have occasional panic attacks, or they may occur frequently. Panic attacks have many variations, but symptoms usually peak within minutes. You may feel fatigued and worn out after a panic attack subsides. Dr. Hafeez states that “One of the worst things about panic attacks is the intense fear that you’ll have another one. A panic attack occurs when the body experiences a sudden surge adrenaline out of proportion to any perceived danger or threat.”

What is a panic disorder?

You may fear having panic attacks so much that you avoid certain situations where they may occur. It can become so severe as to cause agoraphobia where people become housebound. When this occurs, it is known as panic disorder.” She adds, “the word ‘attack’ is actually a misnomer as nothing is being attacked. Panic occurs when the body goes into a state of fight or flight even when no real danger is present. A person can be sitting at their desk typing, yet feel as if they are being chased by a lion and the body is responding with adrenaline appropriate to a dangerous situation, but not realistic for the situation the sufferer is actually in.” Dr. Hafeez stresses to those who suffer from the panic that, “Nobody has ever died from a panic attack! A person may feel as if he/she wants to die, or death is imminent, but it simply will not happen!”

How did Gisele Bundchen reduce her panic?

As Gisele Bundchen has mentioned, her panic attacks subsided when she made lifestyle changes such as not drinking a bottle of wine per day, stopping a pack a day smoking habit, incorporating meditation, yoga, and cutting out sugar. After a few months, she says she stopped experiencing any panic attacks and had a new outlook on her life and her health.

What can you do to reduce and cope with panic?

Calm breathing

Dr. Hafeez says that “Taking control of breathing is the first step to controlling a panic attack. The goal is to create a slow stream of air by breathing in and out. This prevents hyperventilation and a buildup of carbon dioxide in the blood. It is helpful to practice mindful breathing outside of panic attacks. This equips people who experience panic attacks with the techniques designed to stop them. There are apps and YouTube videos people can watch to practice breathing techniques for panic. “

Progressive Muscle Relaxation

Another helpful strategy is learning to relax the body. This technique involves tensing and untensing various muscle groups. This lowers overall tension and stress levels that can contribute to panic attacks. Start with the feet and work up to your forehead. Tighten the muscle while taking a deep breath in, hold for a few seconds and then release the tension while breathing out. Move up the body, one muscle group at a time.

Mindfulness

This is the act of accepting thoughts as they come, but not letting them blow out of proportion. It is a mental framework designed to help people stay present at the moment without overanalyzing the stressful elements of life. Mindfulness incorporates many relaxation and meditation techniques.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Panic attacks can originate from thoughts that spiral into deep-seated worries. Cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) is an effective, lasting treatment for controlling panic attack symptoms. CBT is a helpful option for people who experience repeated panic attacks. CBT challenges fearful thoughts. What are you afraid will happen? Is there evidence to support these fears? A practitioner trained in CBT can equip an individual with the tools to successfully control and defuse a full-blown panic attack.

Yoga

There are many uncomfortable physical symptoms of panic and anxiety, such as feelings of tension, tightness, and pain sensitivity. Yoga postures, known as asanas, help ease the physical discomfort that is caused by anxiety. Asanas work to stretch, lengthen, and balance the muscles. These postures can assist in releasing built-up muscle tension and stiffness throughout the body.

Cut Down on Sugar and eliminate caffeine

Although many people can’t start their day without a “cup of Joe,” Dr. Hafeez says that “for panic sufferers, caffeine can trigger panic attacks because it is a stimulant and can cause people with anxiety to have palpitating hearts and shaky hands. Sugar can cause blurry vision, difficulty thinking, and fatigue, all of which may be interpreted as signs of a panic attack, thereby increasing worry and fear. A sugar high and subsequent crash can cause shaking and tension, which can make anxiety worse. While dietary changes alone cannot cure anxiety, they can minimize symptoms, boost energy and improve the body’s ability to cope with stress.”

Stop Smoking

“If you think smoking calms you down, think again,” says Dr. Hafeez. A study of thousands of smokers shows that they are three times more likely than non-smokers to have panic attacks and panic disorder. Tobacco smoke may induce panic attacks in susceptible individuals. “There can be other mechanisms by which smoking induces panic: the effect of nicotine for example,” says Dr. Hafeez. “Nicotine has a stimulating effect on the brain.”

Reduce or eliminate alcohol

There are clear links between alcohol and anxiety, and between alcohol and panic attacks. Alcohol can trigger panic attacks because on a physiological level drinking can cause low blood sugar, dehydration, increased heart rate, and increased levels of stress. Dr. Hafeez offers that, “A drink from time to time is not harmful, but when people use drinking to deal with anxiety and panic, they can experience severe consequences. Like other frequently abused substances such as caffeine or cocaine, the combination of alcohol abuse, hangover, and withdrawal can lead to an increased risk of panic attacks. As a consequence, this kind of abuse can result in both an alcohol addiction and more severe anxiety and panic disorders.”

Medication

There are many anti-depressants, mood stabilizers, and benzodiazepines like Valium, Ativan, Clonopin, and Xanax that can help keep panic under control when combined with therapy. Antihistamines (such as hydroxyzine) and beta-blockers (such as propranolol) can help mild cases of anxiety as well as performance anxiety, a type of social anxiety disorder. Patients need to keep in mind that benzodiazepines carry the risk of tolerance and addiction and are better suited for short-term or “as needed” usage.

Smartphone apps to assist with panic disorder

There are many great ones that exist such as Dare, Rootd, Anxiety No More, ACT Companion and Pacifica among many others.

About the Doctor:

Dr. Sanam Hafeez PsyD is an NYC based licensed clinical psychologist, teaching faculty member at the prestigious Columbia University Teacher’s College and the founder and Clinical Director of Comprehensive Consultation Psychological Services, P.C. a neuropsychological, developmental and educational center in Manhattan and Queens. Dr. Hafeez masterfully applies her years of experience connecting psychological implications to address some of today’s common issues such as body image, social media addiction, relationships, workplace stress, parenting and psychopathology (bipolar, schizophrenia, depression, anxiety, etc). In addition, Dr. Hafeez works with individuals who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), learning disabilities, attention and memory problems, and abuse. Dr. Hafeez often shares her credible expertise to various news outlets in New York City and frequently appears on CNN and Dr.Oz. Connect with her via Instagram @drsanamhafeez or www.comprehendthemind.com