Relaxation techniques are an essential part of your quest for stress management. Relaxation is a process that decreases the wear and tear on your mind and body from the challenges and frustrations of everyday life. Relaxation is no luxury, it is a necessity for those living a busy, stress-filled life. Learning how to relax will help you deal with common health problems such as high blood pressure, heart disease and obesity, along with a whole host of aging-related disease. Follow these powerful techniques to help you get better at deep breathing and meditation, the two main forces that you can rely upon for a more peaceful and harmonious life:

  1. Understand that any repetitive action can be a source of meditation for you. This includes walking, swimming, painting, knitting, or any activity that helps keep your attention calmly focused in the present moment. In a pinch have something available no matter how simple that you can meditate on or with.
  2. Breathe Deeply. Feeling stressed evokes tense, shallow breathing, while calm is associated with relaxed breathing. To turn tension into relaxation, change the way you breathe.
  3. Drink Hot Tea. If you're a coffee-guzzler, consider going green. Coffee raises levels of a notorious stress hormone, cortisol, while green tea offers health and beauty. Chamomile tea is a traditional favorite for calming the mind and reducing stress. Black tea may be a stress-fighter, too. In every martial arts movie ever made the master always drinks tea, right?
  4. Set aside time in your daily schedule to just do nothing. It seems a little obvious, but ask yourself how many people really do this?
  5. Develop an observant, noncritical attitude. Don�t worry about distracting thoughts that go through your mind or about how well you�re doing. If thoughts intrude during your relaxation session, don�t fight them. Instead, gently turn your attention back to your point of focus.
  6. Visualization, or guided imagery, is a variation on traditional meditation that can help relieve stress. Close your eyes and let your worries drift away. Imagine your restful place. Picture it as vividly as you can--everything you can see, hear, smell, and feel. Guided imagery works best if you incorporate as many sensory details as possible.
  7. Take an Attitude Break. 30 seconds is enough time to shift your heart's rhythm from stressed to relaxed. Engage your heart and your mind in positive thinking. Start by envisioning anything that triggers a positive feeling. Conjuring up a positive thought will help slow breathing, relax tense muscles and put a smile on your face. Creating a positive emotional attitude can calm and steady your heart rhythm, contributing to feelings of relaxation and peace.
  8. Try a bit of Aromatherapy. Certain scents have been found to have a calming, relaxing effect on the human body. One of those scents is lavender. Do some experimentation and research to discover which others might do it for you.

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