Managing Stress By Learning To Relax Your Muscles

A good technique to relax your entire body is to alternately tense and relax each of the major muscle groups in your body, as you breathe deeply and fully.

Posted by Avail Content
1 year ago

A good technique to relax your entire body is to alternately tense and relax each of the major muscle groups in your body, as you breathe deeply and fully. Specifically, try to make your muscles tense, holding that tension for a few moments, and then, all at once, release the tension while thinking to yourself “relax.”

The point of this exercise is to first cause yourself to experience tension, hold that tension, and suddenly release it. You will find that this helps you attain a more relaxed state than if you simply try to relax from a normal, non-tensed position (it’s kind of like swinging a pendulum…to get the pendulum to swing far to one side, you first pull it far to the other side and let go).

Note:

  1. When you release the tension in the muscles, let it go all at once, not slowly. Let your muscles become suddenly limp.
  2. Be cautious about tensing your muscles too much (especially those in your neck and back). As well, over tightening your feet muscles can lead to a cramp.
  3. Most people have only limited success when they first try this exercise. However, once you practice this twice a day for two weeks (e.g. upon awakening and upon going to sleep) you will find that you can use it to attain a more relaxed state than you have ever experienced. It is a profoundly powerful technique of relaxation once you become skilled at it.
  • Sit in a comfortable chair and curl both hands into fists at the same time, tightening your forearms and your biceps.
  • Hold the tension for a few moments.
  • Keep holding and all at once…let go of the tension…just…relax.
  • Let’s do that one more time.
  • Tighten curl both hands into fists, tighten your forearms and your biceps, and hold the tension for a few moments.
  • Keep holding and all at once, let the tension go…and just relax.
  • Next, wrinkle your face, almost as if you are smelling something awful…purse your lips…and raise your eyebrows.
  • Now hold this tension in your face for a few moments…keep holding…continuing to breathe normally…
  • And all at once, let the tension go…just, relax.
  • Let’s do that one more time.
  • Wrinkle your face, almost as if you are smelling something awful…purse your lips…and raise your eyebrows.
  • Now hold this tension in your face for a few moments…keep holding…continuing to breathe normally…
  • And all at once, let the tension go…just, relax.
  • Next, slightly round your back and tighten your abdomen, keep breathing normally, and hold this for a few moments, then all at once let the tension go, and relax.
  • Let’s do that again.
  • Slightly round your back and tighten your abdomen, keep breathing normally, and hold this for a few moments,then all at once let the tension go, and relax.
  • Finally, tense your feet by lifting your toes upward, tightening your shins.
  • Hold this for a few moments, breathing normally, and all at once, let the tension go, and relax.
  • And one more time.
  • Tense your feet by lifting your toes upward, tightening your shins.
  • Hold this for a few moments, breathing normally, and all at once, let the tension go, and relax.
  • Now spend a few moments focusing on your deep relaxed breathing and paying allowing all of the muscles in your body to relax…
  • just let the tension flow away from you…
  • with each breath inwards, breathe in feelings of relaxation and calm….
  • and with each breath outwards, release any tension and any stress.

Learn More

For more information the following resources may be helpful.

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Managing Stress By Learning To Relax Your Muscles

Last updated 1 year ago

A good technique to relax your entire body is to alternately tense and relax each of the major muscle groups in your body, as you breathe deeply and fully. Specifically, try to make your muscles tense, holding that tension for a few moments, and then, all at once, release the tension while thinking to yourself “relax.”

The point of this exercise is to first cause yourself to experience tension, hold that tension, and suddenly release it. You will find that this helps you attain a more relaxed state than if you simply try to relax from a normal, non-tensed position (it’s kind of like swinging a pendulum…to get the pendulum to swing far to one side, you first pull it far to the other side and let go).

Note:

  1. When you release the tension in the muscles, let it go all at once, not slowly. Let your muscles become suddenly limp.
  2. Be cautious about tensing your muscles too much (especially those in your neck and back). As well, over tightening your feet muscles can lead to a cramp.
  3. Most people have only limited success when they first try this exercise. However, once you practice this twice a day for two weeks (e.g. upon awakening and upon going to sleep) you will find that you can use it to attain a more relaxed state than you have ever experienced. It is a profoundly powerful technique of relaxation once you become skilled at it.
  • Sit in a comfortable chair and curl both hands into fists at the same time, tightening your forearms and your biceps.
  • Hold the tension for a few moments.
  • Keep holding and all at once…let go of the tension…just…relax.
  • Let’s do that one more time.
  • Tighten curl both hands into fists, tighten your forearms and your biceps, and hold the tension for a few moments.
  • Keep holding and all at once, let the tension go…and just relax.
  • Next, wrinkle your face, almost as if you are smelling something awful…purse your lips…and raise your eyebrows.
  • Now hold this tension in your face for a few moments…keep holding…continuing to breathe normally…
  • And all at once, let the tension go…just, relax.
  • Let’s do that one more time.
  • Wrinkle your face, almost as if you are smelling something awful…purse your lips…and raise your eyebrows.
  • Now hold this tension in your face for a few moments…keep holding…continuing to breathe normally…
  • And all at once, let the tension go…just, relax.
  • Next, slightly round your back and tighten your abdomen, keep breathing normally, and hold this for a few moments, then all at once let the tension go, and relax.
  • Let’s do that again.
  • Slightly round your back and tighten your abdomen, keep breathing normally, and hold this for a few moments,then all at once let the tension go, and relax.
  • Finally, tense your feet by lifting your toes upward, tightening your shins.
  • Hold this for a few moments, breathing normally, and all at once, let the tension go, and relax.
  • And one more time.
  • Tense your feet by lifting your toes upward, tightening your shins.
  • Hold this for a few moments, breathing normally, and all at once, let the tension go, and relax.
  • Now spend a few moments focusing on your deep relaxed breathing and paying allowing all of the muscles in your body to relax…
  • just let the tension flow away from you…
  • with each breath inwards, breathe in feelings of relaxation and calm….
  • and with each breath outwards, release any tension and any stress.

Learn More

For more information the following resources may be helpful.