Progressive Relaxation

Published Date 11/25/2015
Category: Life, Destiny & Meaning

Take time to escape to Your Place of Peace.

Author's Photo by Heather x7756
Progressive relaxation is about relaxing the mind/body so as to achieve a sense of peace and well-being. Though it is difficult to quiet the mind, it can be done especially by employing all of the known senses: sight, sound, smell, taste, and touch. The inner awareness becomes completely aware in the moment and creates an experience for itself, a place of harmony and peace with no conflicts, no worries, and no pain. You can, of course, change the details about the location. If you prefer the mountains to the beach, for instance, change the details accordingly.

Relaxation Time
Sit in a chair and become as comfortable as you can. Clench your right hand into a fist and clench as hard as you can. Relax your right hand. Feel the difference? Now, clench your left hand into a tight fist.... hold... release and enjoy the calm as you notice the difference. Feel the muscles become smoother. Now, bend your elbows and tense your biceps. Experience the tightness in each bicep. Relax and straighten out each arm. Feel the relaxation and appreciate the difference. 

Turn your attention to your head. Wrinkle your forehead as tightly as you can. Hold it tightly. Now frown and notice the strain spreading through your forehead. Hold the frown tightly. Close your eyes and squint tightly. Feel the tension. Clench your jaw and bite down. Notice the tension in your jaw. Relax and allow your muscles to become smooth. Imagine your forehead and scalp to become smooth as silk. Relax your eyes allowing them to remain gently closed. Relax your jaw and allow your lips to part slightly. Notice that your forehead, scalp, eyes, jaw, tongue and lips are all relaxed... feel the calmness. 

Press your head back as far as you comfortably can. Roll your head to the right and then to the left. Repeat this several times. Straighten your head and bring it forward. Press your chin against your chest for a moment and then relax. Feel the tension easing away. 

Shrug your shoulders. Keep the tension focused as you hunch your head down between your shoulders. Then relax your shoulders. Feel the relaxation spread through your neck, throat, and shoulders. Feel completely relaxed. 

Take a deep breath and fill your lungs completely. Hold the breath for at least four seconds and feel the heaviness. Exhale, allowing your chest to become loose. Continue to relax allowing yourself to breathe slowly and deeply. 

Arch your back, without straining. Keep the rest of your body relaxed. Focus on the tension in your lower back. Relax the tension... deeper and deeper. Tighten your buttocks and thighs. Flex your thighs by pressing down on your heels as hard as you can. Curl your toes outward making your calves tense. Now, relax and feel the difference. Feel the heaviness throughout your lower body as the relaxation deepens. Relax your feet, ankles, calves, shins, thighs and buttocks. 

Your Place of Peace
Continue to relax, breathing slowly and deeply and enter the location of your choice. My “place of peace” is the beach. It's all about you now. Smell the salt in the air. The salt air has such a distinctive aroma. Then hear the waves crashing on the sand. The seagulls cry out in their search for food. Hear other people when you choose to or you can be on the beach alone. It’s your creation... your choice. Taste the salt water in the air and brush little grains of sand off your face and lips. Feel the sand beneath your feet as you look out over the crashing waves. The sun is still visible in the late afternoon sky and it shines brightly on the water. Notice one sailboat in the distance. Stay in this place as long as you like. Often, at night before sleep, envision such a setting and the result is having pleasant dreams about the beach.

Try these techniques next time you need to escape, even just for a few moments.  The only limits to where you can go are up to your imagination. 

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