How to Consciously Relax

Relaxing isn't as easy as some may think it is. Some people just don't relax. Either they are going 'balls to the wall' or they are asleep (and the sleep probably isn't that restful). Sometimes, you have to force yourself to take that step. Make a conscious decision to relax.

Steps

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    Find a place that is quiet that you can do this without interruption.
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    Choose a word or a phrase to focus on. Something that is important to you. You could use the word "relax", "quiet time", "peace", or whatever appeals to you.
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    Make yourself comfortable. You can either sit or lie down, whichever one you prefer.
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    Concentrate on getting your muscles to relax and quieting your mind. Start the process from your feet and work your way up. Concentrate on each area until it feels calm and heavy.
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    Breathe slowly and with ease. Think about your breathing. When you exhale, say your chosen word on the exhale. It's a pattern and helps your body with the process.
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    Be passive. Do not allow negative thoughts to interfere. If they do enter your mind, just dismiss them. "No problem", or "Oh well". There is nothing that you can do at the time and worrying about it will only make your emotional well being worse.
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    Continue on with the breathing, consciously relaxing, and repeating your word(s).
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    Once you feel that 10 to 20 minutes have passed by, slowly start to allow other thoughts to return to your mind. Continue sitting and relaxing while you do this.
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    Open your eyes. Sit quietly for a few more minutes before getting on with your day.

Tips

  • This takes practice. Don't worry if you don't do it 'correctly'. The more you practice, the easier it will become and the more successful you will become.
  • This is a type of meditation.

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