Planned relaxation calms anxiety and helps your body and mind recover from every day rush and stress. Music, a long soak in the bath, or a walk in the park do the trick for some people, but for others it’s not so easy. If you feel you need help with learning to relax, try a CD or relaxation or meditation class.
A basic relaxation exercise to try yourself is:
- Choose a quiet place where you won’t be interrupted.
- Do a few gentle stretching exercises to relieve muscular tension.
- Make yourself comfortable, either sitting or lying down.
- Start to breathe slowly and deeply, in a calm and effortless way.
- Gently tense, then relax, each part of your body, starting with your feet and working your way up to your face and head.
- As you focus on each area, think of warmth, heaviness and relaxation.
- Push any distracting thoughts to the back of your mind; imagine them floating away.
- Don’t try to relax; simply let go of the tension in your muscles and allow them to become relaxed.
Some people find it helpful to visualise a calm, beautiful place such as a garden or meadow. Stay like this for about 20 minutes, then take some deep breaths and open your eyes, but stay sitting or lying for a few moments before you get up.
Relaxation is one of the most effective self-help activities for good mental health. It can be a useful addition to any other form of treatment as well as being an effective measure to prevent the development of stress and anxiety.
To listen to Relaxation Techniques click here!