Here are the Relaxation and imagery techniques. They might be able
to help with Fear, Anxiety and some Phobic situations.
They are still in the archives so if you ever need them again they
are here or just ask me.
Part of the techniques I employ are breathing, stretching, eye
contact, role playing, posture, soft music and imagery.
I know I am prone to stress so if I don't stretch everyday and do
some form of relaxing technique I am in trouble. I also don't sleep
well so it's important to bring yourself down from all the anxieties
you might be feeling well before bed.
**I use deep breathing, not chest breathing but from the stomach
while I'm sitting or laying down. I usually do it threw my nose and
out through my mouth in counts of 5 slowly, in, then count backwards
slowly from 5 to 1 and breath out. I do this repetitiously about 5
times. Then I lay down on the floor or you can do it anywhere you
feel comfortable. With soft music usually harps and flutes I tell my
body and mind to relax (mind body connection) when other thoughts
enter into my state I just repeat a word that knocks them back
out, like "WATER"...I tell my feet to relax and I breath deep, then
my ankles and then another breath, then my calfs and so on up the
body breathing deeply in between. A variation of this is to do it
the same way only tighten each part of the body and then release,
then tighten then release. Your breaths should be deep and slow.Do
it all the way up to your face and head. If any thoughts penetrate
your relaxed state, you say " w-a-t-e-r " and so on. Both of these
work really well for me. If I know I have something stressful to
face it is essential that I do them. Deep breathing has helped me
from having anxiety attacks and to stay calm when thoughts are
flying at me.
The other I use is a 'setting" to elicit a certain response in
myself. The setting is in your mind and anything you wish it to be,
an ocean, a forest, another place and time etc. I use a long winding
Staircase as my setting. It's an old large house with lot's of
antiquities and the staircase just goes on and on...I start at the
top of stairs and everything is softly lit, candles and it just
feels like a safe place to be. As I approach the steps I know I have
to count them all and pause at each step as I go down. I start with
#1 and step down; breath, see my setting and begin adorning the
bannister with whatever I brought along with me. Usually pretty
foliage and flowers and maybe some lights. I do it carefully and
lovingly. All the while counting down and breathing on each step as
I make my way down. I wind the leaves around the bannister and just
proceed slowly and methodically, I am at step 6 and relax, breath,
look around at my "work" on the hand rail and just move on slowly. I
decide when I am finished or you can set say, 20 steps ahead of time
and Know when you get to that 20th step you are done. The exercise
helps lower anxiety because you are accomplishing something that
makes you feel good in the journey and your body responds to your
gentle commands and your mind relaxes. You might even fall asleep!
But you can do this anywhere you want or need to relax.
If you have to be around a lot of people you can elicit a relaxation
response by using a key word, phrase or prayer while deep slow
breathing. Nobody can tell you are doing this, especially if you
practice it regularly.
When I have to be somewhere and talk with people I find a spot on
their face, stand up straight and keep the word "water" in the back
of my mind so that I dont get caught up in how I sound and begin to
faulter. If I don't do this I can easily be sidetracked with the
event and the anxiety will hit me instantly.
There are many websites on relaxation and meditation that might be
worth taking a look at too. I've developed these techniques with me
in mind from a variety of materials I've come across...using what
helps me best.
Hope this offers some relief. :o)
**The relaxation response can be brought forth through many
techniques including imagery, progressive muscle relaxation,
meditation, repetitive exercises, breath focus and/or a focus on a
word, phrase or prayer. These techniques were created personally with
my own need in mind and have not been reprinted from any other source.