There are a number of specific procedures that bring about a state of relaxation, for example yoga, meditation, progressive and deep muscular relaxation, autogenics, self-hypnosis and biofeedback. Many of these procedures must be learnt and practised regularly. They should become as much a part of your life as brushing your teeth, and not restricted to when you are feeling or expect to feel stressed. Learning these techniques takes time and you should not expect too much too soon. Furthermore, it can take a while before the benefits are experienced but the results are worth waiting for. Later we describe the techniques we use and take you through the procedures so you can learn to achieve a state of relaxation.
There are also a number of activities that can be built into your daily routine to make you feel relaxed and revitalized. Taking a hot bubble bath, floating in a swimming pool, taking a steam bath, sauna or jacuzzi can bring about a state of relaxation. So too can going for a pleasant walk, taking a weekend break away from home, listening to your favourite music (Baroque music appears to be particularly effective), reading your favourite blogs, a night out at the theatre, an evening meal at your favourite restaurant.
Massage is a particularly effective way of relaxing the muscles which in turn leads to a calm mind. Also taking up a hobby, a leisure activity, joining a club, tinkering with the car, tackling a DIY project or developing new interests can all be relaxing as long as they are looked on as relaxation activities. But beware; some of these activities can be stressful if tackled in the wrong way.
A well-planned holiday of at least a week’s duration is a good way to recharge your batteries. However, take heed, even a holiday can be packed full of distress. There might be airport delays, language and currency problems and there could be plenty of rain instead of guaranteed’ sun. Stomach trouble can strike, you get sunburnt, and your partner forgot to pack your favourite beachwear. What is intended to be a relaxing holiday can turn into a distressful nightmare! Preparation and planning can help avoid many of these problems and minimize distress.