by SHELLEY BRUCAR
Going back to the first leg of the stool and still working on Relaxation, today’s topic is VISUALIZATION, also known as IMAGERY.
In addition to promoting relaxation, visualization can be used to visualize success. We’ll be talking about that sometime later. As a tool to help you relax, many people think of visualization as “going to your happy place.” You use your thoughts to put yourself somewhere, real or imagined, that just feels good.
Once again, you can purchase a recording or use the script provided below to do it yourself. Remember to GO SLOWLY. When you finish your visualization, please share your experience.
“Setting Sun” by Shelley Brucar. Needle-felted and maching stitched.
Sit or lie down and get totally comfortable. Close your eyes. Focus your attention on your breathing. Inhale deeply and slowly. Take even longer to exhale than to inhale. As you inhale, bring in good feelings. As you exhale, release negativity. Breathe deeply and feel completely relaxed.
Walk slowly to a quiet place in your mind. You can make this place exactly what you want it to be. Your place can be inside or outside. It might be in your own house or another place where you feel peaceful.
You might be on a beach where you hear the waves, feel the warmth of the sun and the gentle breeze brushing your body. You could be in a forest where you hear the rustle of the leaves and feel the coolness in the air.
Maybe you’re out in a gentle rain and feel the mist across your face. Maybe you’re in water, a bathtub, a pool or the ocean, feeling the movement of the water wash over your body. Or maybe this special place is a room in your home where you can relax in your favorite chair and watch the soft light coming through the window while you listen to your favorite music.
Your special place might be somewhere you have never been but have only imagined. Wherever it is, make your special place peaceful and safe.
Picture yourself unloading your anxieties and your worries. Leave them somewhere outside your special place. They can be there waiting for you when you choose to return to them. If other thoughts intrude while you visit your special place, gently bring your focus back.
Now bring your awareness to your body. Do you feel secure and protected? What are your wearing? Is your clothing loose enough to allow full, deep breathing? Do you have shoes on or are you barefoot? Notice how your toes feel. Are you comfortable and relaxed?
Engage all your senses as you become aware of the details in your special place. What do you see all around you? Notice the view in the distance. What do you see there? What do you smell? What sounds do you hear? Notice what is before you. If you want to, reach out and touch it. Notice how it feels. The sounds, textures and smells here enhance your sense of peace and serenity.
What is the temperature in your special place? Is it warm or is it cool? Is it day or night-time? Is the lighting bright, or is it soft and subdued? Make the temperature and the lighting exactly the way you want them.
Feel the peacefulness of your special place, and be at peace with yourself. Feel the warmth and tranquility throughout your body. If there is anything you want to change in this place, you can do that.
Take as long as you want to luxuriate in the quiet and tranquility of this special place. Feel your whole body loosening, from your head, neck shoulders and arms, down to your stomach, legs and toes.
Remember that you can visit your special place any time you want to experience these peaceful feelings.
When you feel ready, and with your eyes still closed, slowly bring your awareness back to the present. When you feel ready, open your eyes, keeping the peacefulness and relaxation that you have given yourself.