I give props to my friend for introducing me to the GPS4Soul app! This smart phone app helps track your stress level at anytime. I admit that I thought she had gone to the “alternative” side and was suspicious about accuracy until I tested it with our office pulse oximeter ( Eek–it was dead on every time!). This smart phone app measures your heart rate over a period of 75 seconds to check for its variability. The Institute of Heart Math has published many peer-reviewed articles (IE: The American Journal of Cardiology, Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine–they are all on their website) that support research concluding that stress levels can be monitored by heart rate variability. It really works! I have used the app the last few weeks and found that my stress levels are high in the afternoon (usually 3-4 pm). I’ve tried breathing exercises and mantras to de-stress before making the trip home from the office . It’s helping! I also turned off the radio in the car and turned my phone on silent to minimize distractions. The best thing is that the gps4soul (type this in your search mechanism to download) app is free and requires no additional attachments or fees. You don’t have much to lose by trying it out.
So here’s my version of the physiology extensively simplified–
1. The heart and the brain influence each other’s functions.
2. The signals that the heart sends to the brain influence cognitive function and emotional processing.
3. Stress and negative emotions will influence your heart rate which can be monitored closely.
4. Monitoring your heart rate will help you access your level of stress throughout the day.
5. This app gives you some deep breathing exercises, mantras, and affirmations that will help you calm your mood within minutes at any time of the day.
Sorry Bobby Knight—“The Power of Negative Thinking” may work for team sports. However, when it comes to daily living–Positive thinking is the key to health and vitality.
Check out http://www.heartmath.org for more details. This site explains all the science.
Comment or email me if you try this–I’m dying to hear what you think!