Listen to a guided meditation
If you can, find a place where you can sit without interruptions for 10 minutes. Begin by adopting a comfortable posture that is relaxed, but alert. Remember, as you listen to these meditations that you can modify anything that does not feel supportive to you--you are in control.
- 5 min grounding meditation (male voice)
- 7-minute awareness of body and breath meditation (female voice)
These meditations are from the Mindfulness at Work online course offered by the Center for Spirituality and Healing.
Try imagining a spot just below your navel. Breathe into that spot and fill your abdomen with air. Let the air fill you from the abdomen up, then let it out, like deflating a balloon. With every long, slow breath out, you will feel more relaxed.
- Sit up straight.
- Inhale through your nose with your mouth closed.
- Exhale through your mouth with your lips pursed (as if you were whistling or kissing).
- Make your exhalation twice as long as your inhalation (for example, inhale for two seconds, exhale for four). Use your abdomen when you breathe, consciously pushing your belly out. Try putting one hand over your stomach, to see how it rises and falls.
- Focus your attention on your breathing. Take a few deep breaths, exhaling slowly.
- Mentally scan your body. Notice areas that feel tense or cramped. Quietly loosen them. Let go of as much tension as you can.
- Rotate your head in a smooth, circular motion once or twice (avoid any movements that cause pain).
- Roll your shoulders forward and backward several times. Let all of your muscles completely relax.
- Recall a pleasant thought, event, or place.
- Take deep breaths and exhale slowly.
- Prepare yourself in a comfortable position.
- Simply bring your awareness to your breath.
- Allow yourself a few natural breaths.
- When you are ready, empty your lungs completely.
- On your next inhale, breathe in quietly through the nose for 4 seconds.
- Hold the breath for a count of 7 seconds.
- Exhale forcefully through the mouth, pursing the lips and making a “whoosh” sound, for 8 seconds.
- Repeat the cycle 6 times (about 2 minutes).
Guided imagery elicits the five senses to calm the mind and body, and it allows individuals to reflect on aspects of previous experiences to produce relaxation and a positive response.