With Christmas approaching everyone has less time to think about exercising so here is a gentle exercise to help reduce stress that takes less than a minute to do and can be practised in sitting, whilst at the computer, or in standing.
Breathe in normally and imagine that you are suspended by a string attached to the top of your head and stretch your body up into an upright military posture – shoulders back, chest out etc. Feel the excess tension in your muscles. Then without losing the upright position gently sigh out and starting at the top of your head release the excess tension, relax and soften the muscles in your face, neck, shoulders, chest, abdomen, hips, knees and ankles. Imagine warm sunshine flowing down the front, back and sides of your body melting the excess muscle tension away. Feel the difference in your muscles when they are actively relaxed. Repeat as necessary throughout the day.