Wedding stress is a concept most engaged girls get to know really well in the weeks and months before (and after) the wedding. That's why it's smart to build a toolbox of stress relievers you can pull out whenever you're feeling overwhelmed with wedding planning. Start with these four acupressure points, recommended by Janet Shaffer, LAc, a licensed acupuncturist and Eastern medicine expert at Duke Integrative Medicine. "There are places in our body where energy just gets a bit jammed up. I like to think of it like the lint trapper in the dryer," she says. "So using acupressure at these certain points is like an internal dimmer, going directly where tension lies to take off some pressure."
1. Yintang (Third Eye)
Using your first two fingers and thumb, gently pinch the area of your forehead right between your eyebrows, and tilt your head down. Hold for at least a minute. "This is a great spot for just chilling out, when you need to take a step back and get your ducks in a row. It's a very centering point," says Shaffer.
2. Tanzhong (Chest Center)
Just place a flat palm against your chest at the point directly between your breasts and apply gentle pressure. Hold for at least one minute. "This is another good one for just calming yourself down and feeling the rhythm of your heart," says Shaffer.
3. Shenmen (Spirit Gate)
With fairly firm pressure, press down on your wrist crease straight down from your pinky, just on the outside of the tendon there. "This is a really good one right before bed, it settles you right down," she says.
4. Yongquan (Gushing Spring)
Locate a tender spot on the bottom of your foot, right near the middle and press down with your thumb. "It can take some maneuvering to find exactly where it is, but you'll know when you've found it, because it's often quite tender," says Shaffer. "This is especially the case when you're PMS-ing or overall feeling frustrated. It's great to do before or after a workout to help release steam. I'm usually gentle to start, and then ramp up pressure."