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Breathing, Visualization And It's Effects For Powerful Stress Relief & Management

Aug 17, 2007
Stress is something that affects the mind and the body. In a sense proving that the mind and body are intimately related. Many studies have shown a correlation between stress and physical illness in everything from weight to heart conditions to headaches and even insomnia

Next do this experiment created by Win Wenger PhD, to establish the connection between mind-body for your own experience and understanding.

Mind-Body Observation Exercise 1

Stand up and imagine you are standing on the edge of a cliff. Imagine a of several thousand feet beginning right at your toes. Look down and see the ground far far below you making this image a vivid as possible. You should be able to feel a tingling sensation in your feet and legs. This is the type of tension that an average person would feel standing on the edge of a cliff.

The above is an example of how a mental experience can cause bodily sensations.

From birth onwards all the sensations of your experiences are stored as memories in your mind AND body. For example that piece of music that makes you feel sad or nostalgic or happy are all perceived mentally but are felt in the mind and body. Or in reverse, learning to relax a stressed out part of the body or getting a deep tissue massage can occasionally cause memory flashbacks. A phenomenon well known to massage therapists.

Mind-Body Observation Exercise 2

Take a couple of deep breaths. Breathing in slowly and fully till you can't take in any more air. Then, without pausing, slowly exhale till all air has left your lungs. Do this a couple of times without pausing to get a feel for this breathing pattern. Now remember the feelings of standing by the edge of a cliff? Recreate those right now vividly as if you are now on the edge of a cliff. Feel those tingling feelings. Now breath deeply but imagine that the air is coming into your body through your feet, pulling up the tingling feelings and exhale them out of your body. Notice how with each inhale you can take more of those feelings and remove them from your body on the exhale.

Congratulations! You have just learnt how to combine breathing with imagery to release tension. That was easy.

Enhancing Breathing's Positive Effects with Visualization

Your imagination can be your most powerful ally. Professional athletes practice visualization before performance. And studies have shown that practicing visualization before a performance can be just as effective as actual physical practice. In other words, your subconscious, tends to perceive imagination/visualization and physical realty as the same! So I will say it again. Imagination is your most powerful ally. Make it your friend.

A Quick Lesson in Visualization

Many people believe that they cannot 'see images'. Fortunately that's not possible. If you have eyes images play a large role in how you organize your perceptions. If you can daydream then you can visualize.

- An easy way to start is just to think about your house or apartment.
- Imagine you are standing outside and looking at your door
- Describe your door in detail. What color is it? What is the shape of the door handle? What is it's color? How high is the door? What does it sound like if you knock on it?
- The part of your mind that you are using to describe the door is the part you can use for visualization.
- Imagine your door in a different color. First blue, then red, then green, then yellow, then purple. If you can do this you can do all the visualizations in this course. Simply use your imagination and pretend if you have to. The more you can pretend the better your imagination will get at it.

Golden Light Breathing Meditation

Visualizing Yourself Breathing in 'Golden Light' can be a Very Effective Breathing Meditation to Help Calm and Focus.

- All you have to do is imagine yourself surrounded by golden light and slowly start breathing it in.
- First breathe in the light through your mouth then pretend to breath it in through your skin.
- Breathe this light in deeply and breathe out any tension.
- Breathe through each "part" of your body in turn.
- Finally see if you can feel as if you are breathing in this light through every pore in your body.
- Fill your body with the golden light while saying to yourself, "I feel Wonderful, I feel Relaxed, I feel focused."
About the Author
Abbas Abedi - Learn ways you can find immediate stress relief and permanent stress management skills. Visit my stress management & relief website for articles and videos to help you manage stress right away.
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