Fight off Tension with Deep Relaxation
The next time you want to turn on the TV to relax, try some Deep Relaxation!
By now you realize that relaxation is far more than just going on vacation or watching a good TV flick. While these activities can bring relaxation, true relaxation is much more: it slows down both the body and the mind.
Think of true relaxation as a type of ''Condensed Rest."
True relaxation has been proven to promote natural healing and it increases the rate of recuperations. Research also points to deep relaxation as a help with memory and learning.
Any time of the day or night, you can take “5” and try this simple "Mini-Relaxation Technique." You will minimize the amount of pressure or stress during any given day.
Take in three deep breaths.
With each deep breath, imagine that you are inhaling feelings of calm and peace.
With each exhale, breathe out feelings of pressure and stress.
Take time during your day to stop and focus on a pleasant thought or image (like a baby playing in the sand.) Do this many times a day.
Allow your shoulders and jaw to completely relax.
Do not focus on any stress.
Close your eyes and feel any tension throughout your body.
Picture this tension as water being held in a pitcher.
Feel as the water begins to flow from the pitcher.
You will begin to feel light and weightless.
Stay in this for as long as you can.
Deep relaxation is the ability to instantly de-stress and to stay focused on the calm and serenity. This is a skill that can be developed and strengthened. It works best when practiced for about 20 minutes each day, although even a few minutes each day can help.
A Quieting Exercise for Mind and Body
Once you have learned to hold your relaxed state for a full fifteen to twenty minutes, you are ready to progress to an even higher level of relaxation.
Look for the following physiological/psychological signs of relaxation to know you are ready to reach a higher level:
> A feeling of heaviness in the muscles/you are unable to move.
> A sensation of warmth coming from your hands or feet flowing towards the central core of your body.
> A tingling vibration throughout your extremities.
> A sense of detachment or void in thoughts as they flow through your stream of consciousness.
Higher Level of Relaxation Exercise
Take two, four-count, easy breaths, slowly.
As you inhale your first breath say to yourself, “Leave my body out of this!”
As you exhale your first breath, smile inwardly to yourself.
As you inhale your second breath choose two muscles groups (jaw and shoulders) and relax them as you exhale your second breath.
Repeat this as much as twenty to thirty times daily, each time you even begin to feel the least stress.