GENTLE BREATHING (do this for 1 minute) Sit comfortably on a chair, with your back straight and both feet on the ground. If you can’t sit down, stand as straight as possible without slouching or leaning against anything. Close your eyes and focus on your breathing. Try to let thoughts pass by, rather than pondering on them or daydreaming. You can also add aromatherapy to your meditation. Get a couple of drops of essential oils and put them on your wrists. Inhale deeply and this will allow you to go even deeper into your meditation/relaxation. 

TENSE AND RELAX (do this for 4 minutes) Make a fist with your right hand and tense all the muscles in your forearm. Hold the tension for five seconds and then relax your muscles for about 10 seconds. Now do the same thing with each part of your body. Tighten each group of muscles, hold the tension and then relax fully. 

VISUALIZE (do this for 3 minutes) Try to recall a place or time where you felt content and relaxed. Use your imagination to reconstruct the place and how you felt when you were there. It might have been a beach vacation or mountains where you went hiking. Let yourself become totally immersed in the scene.

LET GO (do this for 1 minute) Once your mind and body are completely relaxed, let go of your stress. Visualize a stream of light or energy pouring through your body and washing your stress away, or imagine the stress leaving your body with each breath out. Picture yourself getting through the rest of the day without stress by trying to anticipate any potentially difficult situation. Thinking about how you can get through them calmly will help you to put this into practice. 

STRETCH (do this for 1 minute) Keep your eyes closed and breathe in and out deeply. Enjoy the feeling of relaxation and rest. Move your fingers and toes playfully. Then breathe in and stretch your arms up over your head. Stretch your legs out in front of you. Exhale and open your eyes. 

Make this a daily Practice. The more often you do this 10-minute stress-relief plan, the better. You may be surprised at how relaxed and confident you start to feel, and how the challenging parts of your life no longer feel nearly so daunting and stressful. 

Til we meet Again,

Anai Esquivel, Mindful Living


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