• Relaxation & Visualization

    Relaxation is the process of releasing physical tension while creating mental calm. It is a restorative and rejuvenating process where all of your internal systems work at their most efficient rate. Relaxation is what is left when you stop “doing”. Spending time daily in relaxation promotes optimal conditions for balanced and healthy living.

    Steps in the Process of Relaxation

    • Find a comfortable area, where ideally you will not be disturbed while relaxing
    • Wear loose clothing that will keep you comfortably warm – Remove wristwatch, eyeglasses or contact lenses
    • Listening to your body, allow for any gentle movement or easy stretch to begin to release physical tension
    • Create a comfortable and fully supported pose either sitting or lying down where your spine can lengthen, using props such as pillows or blankets
    • Close your eyes and soften the muscles of your face by letting go of facial expression
    • Begin to follow the rhythm of your natural breath allowing it to carry your awareness inward
    • Gently move your awareness through your inner and outer body, as if to take a mental inventory, and notice each part of your body relaxed
    • Any time your mind wanders or you become distracted, without further conversation, gently return to your natural breath
    • Come out of relaxation slowly by moving your fingers and toes, then listen to your body as you move and stretch instinctively
    • The amount of time you spend in relaxation is not as important as developing a regular practice at a time or times of the day that you can keep consistent

    Creative visualization or mental imagery is a way to consciously use your natural creative imagination to make positive changes in your life and health. Quite simply, it is the process of your mind thinking in pictures creating a clear image of your physical, mental, emotional or spiritual desires. Practiced regularly, this inner work has the power to positively affect your body and create what you want in your life.

    “Create a mental picture of exactly what you want as if it were already happening – keep this positive image in the present tense.”

    Steps for Creative Visualization

    • Follow the steps for relaxation – if you have a tendency to fall asleep when lying down, find a supported way to sit comfortably with your spine elongated
    • Set your intentions – clearly define what you wish to achieve through mental imagery
    • Create a mental picture of exactly what you want as if it were already happening – keep this positive image in the present tense
    • Don’t try hard to create an image – you may have just a sense of the picture, you may feel like an observer watching a movie or you may feel that you are a full participant experiencing the image – allow the process to be natural
    • Use all of your senses to help create the details of your visualization – picture yourself seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting and touching
    • When you have a sense of completion with your mental image, let it go and know that you have achieved its benefits – only a few minutes can stimulate powerful responses
    • Imagery exercises are practiced ideally upon waking and before going to sleep – throughout the day you will be benefit by gently holding positive images
    • Guided imagery is available in audio recordings and books and may be used to assist you with this inner -work

    Disclaimer: This article was written for educational purposes only and is based on the tradition of Ayurveda. It is not intended to treat, diagnose, prescribe or heal any health condition or to replace standard medical treatment or advice.