Monday, May 15, 2017

The “Brain Buttons” – Acupressure points for releasing stress

I was delighted to be invited by Green Living Arizona, a magazine based here in Phoenix, to contribute a "brain health" article for their May, 2017 publication.

I wondered, "What single aspect of Brain Gym® could their readers put to use immediately, and notice a difference?" And further: "What can I share, simply and clearly, in just 500 words?"

The perfect answer emerged: the Brain Buttons! I modified a portion of what I'd written about this wonderful activity for my book Educate Your Brain - and the magazine publisher loved it. 

Now, I'm imagining each magazine reader pausing, bringing her hand up to find and massage her Brain Buttons, noticing that she's more relaxed and comfortable, breathing more deeply, and even reading more easily! 

I invite you to find out what your own response is to the Brain Buttons! 

The "Brain Buttons" 
Acupressure Points for Releasing Stress

Imagine having one simple movement that you could do almost anytime to bring more clarity to your vision and the feeling of energy and coordination to your whole body. You do—and it’s right at your fingertips!

Take a moment and notice how you’re feeling right now. Is your body tense, or relaxed? Are your thoughts troubled, or calm? Is your breath shallow, or slow and deep? 

Now I invite you to experience what comes of massaging your "Brain Buttons" - one of 26 movements from the Brain Gym® program. 

The Brain Buttons
At the top of your ribcage are your collarbones. Find these horizontal bones and then let your fingers slip downward about an inch or so, until they’re resting over your uppermost ribs, just on either side of your sternum, or breastbone. These spots may feel like slight indentations, or softer than the surrounding area. 
Make a large “U” with your hand and place the thumb on one of the spots, and the fingertips on the other. Massage these points gently but firmly as you rest your other hand over your navel, and allow your eyes to track gently side to side. Do this for perhaps twenty to thirty seconds. (If you experience tenderness, rub gently until it is released or reduced.) Then switch hands for another twenty to thirty seconds. 
What do you notice now in your body – your thoughts – your breathing? 
The Brain Buttons are potent spots in the world of acupressure. They’re the “K-27s” – the 27th points on the Kidney Meridian; massaging them can help to correct imbalances in the entire meridian system. 
When I rub my Brain Buttons on a stressful day, I often find myself exhaling deeply as I feel my body relax. I may notice my shoulders dropping and my posture straightening. Sometimes I feel a release of tension at the back of my neck. Then even my eyes relax, and it’s easier to scan lines of print, or more fully see the world around me. Typically, I feel more awake and focused. 
One evening, after a very demanding day, I was sitting in a theater with my husband, listening to a classical chorale performance. It was wonderful—and long. And the room was dark. Before long, my head was nodding and I was struggling to keep my eyes open. Then I thought about Brain Buttons. I quietly brought my hand up and gave those spots a bit of a rub and instantly found myself wide awake! I felt completely alert and refreshed throughout the rest of the evening. 
Brain Buttons Article in Green Living AZ Magazine
While a truly remarkable occurrence like this may not happen every day, I continue to experience smaller, helpful shifts all the time. I often use this movement (sometimes nonchalantly) during long meetings, and in a wide variety of similar situations, to maintain a clear focus and remain at my best.

This article is a modified version of a portion of Educate Your Brain, Kathy Brown’s book about the basics of the Brain Gym® program.

Kathy Brown, M.Ed., is a Licensed Brain Gym® Instructor/Consultant. She teaches courses, consults with school districts, writes books and articles, and sees clients in her office in Phoenix, Arizona.
Click here to see the entire May, 2017 issue of Green Living Arizona.

Enjoy coming back into physical comfort and postural alignment, with the Brain Buttons!

With warmest regards,

Kathy Brown, M.Ed.
Educational Kinesiologist
Licensed Brain Gym® Instructor/Consultant
Author of Educate Your Brain

Brain Gym® movement photograph Copyright© Laird Brown Photography. All rights reserved
©Copyright 2017 Kathy Brown. All rights reserved.
Original article from Educate Your Brain. Phoenix: Balance Point Publishing LLC. 2012. 17-20.  
Brain Gym® is a registered trademark of the Educational Kinesiology Foundation  •  Ventura, CA  •
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  1. Great article, Kathy! We are now using this for participants in competitive Billiards Tournaments! Thanks!

  2. Fabulous, Tom! I love how Brain Gym is supporting people doing so many diverse activities!