Cuan Law Sailing Blog

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Top 7 Ways The Caribbean Calms Anxiety!

If you’re suffering from anxiety, nervousness, fidgeting or just feeling a little wound-up, it can sometimes feel all-consuming and never-ending.   Living with anxiety, or any of the similar symptoms, can really affect your ability to enjoy life and the people around you. It may prevent you from going out with friends, making conversation at work, maintaining composure when plans don’t go your way, or even just getting out of bed in the morning.

Of course, treatment and management of symptoms, patterns and disruptions can take many forms. There is the medical route, in which you work closely with your medical team to regulate your symptoms through medications, and there are alternative therapies such as breathing activities, journaling, behaviour therapy, massage therapy and even exercise.  It seems that more and more people are recognizing the limitations of their anxieties and working in positive, holistic ways to help ease the discomfort.  A combination of medical and supplementary options create a holistic approach to managing the symptoms.  It gives you control over your situation and responses to the situation.

One supplementary option that is often overlooked, and taken for granted, is our connection to the outdoors.  Our connection to the outdoor physical environment – the earth – and all of its elements.  As our society becomes increasingly dependent on electronic devices, we are becoming equally reliant upon remaining indoors and further disconnecting us from our natural environments.

This is a shame! Studies are showing that our natural elements can provide a lasting and positive effect on our mental health and well-being; and even more so when we commit to our environmental connection on a daily basis!  Depending on where you live in the world, access to some of the most influential environmental aspects may not be available on a daily basis – which is why some doctors actually recommend a southern vacation to help manage the symptoms of anxiety! But why? What is it about the Caribbean that can be so helpful? Here are the top 7 ways that the Caribbean calms anxiety!

1. The Length of Day

The consistent and equal length of day and night helps to reset our circadian rhythm, thereby balancing our body’s serotonin, melatonin and cortisol levels.  All of which are affected by the amount of sunlight we’re exposed to, the quality of our sleep and the consistency in the length of our day. When our bodies have high levels of cortisol, our stress hormone, we are more likely to exhibit anxious behaviours, nervousness and to feel ‘wound-up’, as our cortisol hormone is what puts us in a ‘fight or flight’ state.  Having a better balance of our sleep hormones (melatonin and serotonin) can help reduce the high cortisol levels and provide our minds with the rest needed to have better focus and emotional stability.

2. Vitamin D

The vitamin D exposure aids in the improvement of brain health, function and mood. Our bodies cannot create Vitamin D without exposure to the sun. Having direct and constant exposure on a daily basis allows our body to create a constant supply of Vitamin D to help regulate our moods and emotions.

3. Caribbean Air

The Caribbean air is of a cleaner quality than our industrial cities and offers the natural benefits of sea salt and gentle humidity. All of these, in combination, are great for clearing our sinuses and providing fresh oxygen to all parts of our body, including our brain.  Fresh oxygen and oxygenated blood to our brains allow our brain to think more clearly and robustly about a situation, rather than feeling closed off from solutions.

4. The Sand

The sand in your toes, wrapped around your feet, and between your fingers can provide a tactile experience that is mesmerizing, calming and grounding. Tactile experiences have been shown to reduce symptoms of anxiety. This has become increasingly well-known in part due to the popular ‘fidget spinners’ and other random toys that provide a repetitive movement and texture for our minds to focus on.  This focus allows us to feel more control in our environment and allows us the chance to regroup our thoughts while we calm down.

5. The Ocean Sounds

The ocean sounds provide a relaxing, cyclical pattern that the brain finds soothing.  The sounds are similar to what our immature ears hear as infants in utero and remind us of a safe space where we don’t need to feel negative emotions.

6. The Ocean Movement

The ocean movement.  Spend a night in a cabin boat on the ocean. The gentle, constant and rhythmic rocking of the boat again takes us back to experiences in utero that will lull and soothe our anxious fears and behaviours.

7. The Slower Pace

The slower pace of the Caribbean environment can really help us unwind and relax from the stress of our everyday lives.  It helps us to remember to breathe and focus on what’s in front of us, rather than what’s to come. In addition to this, being away from our daily life requirements really gives us more time to focus on self-care and symptom regulation techniques, such as developing a habit for journaling, deep breathing, stretching, or exercise!

There you have it – 7 ways that the Caribbean can help you in relaxing your anxiety and give you some control over your symptoms!

Of course, Cuan Law can help you unwind and shed some of those anxious feelings during our specially designated week in October for those living with anxiety and anxious behaviours!

Join us from October 18th-24th, 2020 for the week of a lifetime!

OR in a more professional development setting by participating in “Wellness Week” from August 9th-15th, 2020 or October 25th-31st, 2020!

How To Create the Perfect Team

By focusing on just 3 important changes!

If you look through our many positive reviews left by our amazing guests, you’ll see that one of the aspects they comment on is our crew! How helpful, positive and cohesive the team is onboard!  When working (and living) in tight quarters, it’s important to create a team that can not just ‘function together’ but can THRIVE!  So we thought we’d throw together some of the best ways to improve teamwork and workplace morale!

Creating the perfect team at work can sometimes seem like an impossible mission.  It seems that between the personalities of each employee and the increasing workloads that the dynamics within a ‘team’ are just too complicated to ‘perfect’.

But let’s step back for just a moment and define what these terms actually mean.  What is ‘perfect’? What is a ‘team’? And what, specifically, is the ‘perfect team’?  If we consulted Webster, we’d get the following definitions:

  1. Perfect (adjective) means to have all the required or desirable elements, qualities or characteristics; as good as it can possibly be.
  2. Perfect (verb) means to make something completely free from faults/defects, or as close to such a condition as possible.
  3. Team (noun) means a group of people, two or more, working together.
  4. Team (verb) means to come together, matching and coordinating, to achieve a common goal.

bvi diving vacation

It’s always fun to hear the stories of each of our guests because everyone comes from their own journey.  Recently, we had a guest on board who has allowed us to share their decision to sail with Cuan Law because they felt that their story is so relatable to most of us.  This is what they said:

“I am so thankful for having had spent time on Cuan Law.  I am an independent contractor and work two positions from home that are in entirely different industries, plus I am a parent to one young child.  Working upward of 10+ hours every day to meet the demands of my two positions, and being an involved and ‘present’ parent were really starting to take its toll on my well-being.  I was feeling overwhelmed, stretched, and anxious.  I was feeling like there wasn’t enough time in the day to do what needed to get done or that I was always sacrificing one option for another.  My creativity was essentially nil, I had no new ideas and was just running in circles in some aspects of my work.  If my work issues weren’t enough, I was starting to become anxious and snappy with my daughter. I was not being the parent I wanted to be.

I actually felt like I was drowning.  I decided that I needed to take some time away from it all. Some time to disconnect, refocus my thoughts, recenter my priorities and better manage my time.  I knew that it was time to take a breather – I needed to come up for air.  I knew that I’d never have been able to do that if I stayed home – or even near my home.  I’d be tempted to just keep working.  I knew that what I needed was to get a total change of scenery. So I did.  I booked my experience with Cuan Law.  I’m not a diver. No way, that’s not for me!  But I do enjoy the other activities available and the atmosphere sounded like exactly what I needed. 

It absolutely was!  Being onboard gave me the chance to disconnect from my endless circles and allow me the chance to think, relax, and enjoy myself.  By the end of the week, I had a much more clear vision of how to manage my time, reduce my workload, dissolve my stress, and even figured out the solutions to the work-specific problems!  Thank you, Cuan Law!”

Now we’re curious – what motivated YOU to join Cuan Law?

BVI Diving Vacation with Cuan Law

bvi sailing vacation

Often times, as our guests are disembarking at the end of their charter, we are bombarded with the thank you’s – the appreciation of the experience received while onboard Cuan Law and for the memories made.  But really, one of the most important thank you’s actually does not go to us, but to YOU instead.  It goes to YOU for choosing Cuan Law! It goes to YOU for trusting us to provide you with a great experience! It goes to YOU for respecting the guidelines that promote a healthy, safe and fun environment! And lastly, it goes to YOU for giving US another great experience, the opportunity to make new friends and learn and grow!

So from our Cuan Law family to Yours! Thank you so much!