Muscle relaxation

by Herbs, Etc.

People with anxieties are often so tense throughout the day that they don’t even recognize what being relaxed feels like. Through practice you can learn to distinguish between the feelings of a tensed muscle and a completely relaxed muscle. Then, you can begin to “cue” this relaxed state at the first sign of the muscle tension that accompanies your feelings of anxiety. By tensing and releasing, you learn not only what relaxation feels like, but also to recognize when you are starting to get tense during the day.

Progressive Muscle Relaxation drains physical tension and turns emotional turmoil into inner stillness. Rest in a comfortable position with eyes closed. Alternately tense (10 seconds) then relax (20 seconds) each body segment sequentially. Tense and relax feet, legs, torso, arms, shoulders and neck, and finally your face. Enjoy the tingly warmth that results. The more you practice, the more it helps.


Set aside about 15 minutes to complete this exercise. Find a place where you can complete this exercise without being disturbed. For the first week or two, practice this exercise twice a day until you get the hang of it. The better you become at it, the quicker the relaxation response will “kick in” when you really need it! You do not need to be feeling anxious when you practice this exercise. In fact, it is better to first practice it when you are calm. That way, it will be easier to do when feeling anxious.