Once you've learned
how your muscles should feel when they're relaxed, it becomes a matter of practice to
bring them into that relaxed state. This process is called self-regulation.
Using the following muscle relaxation technique, you can learn to induce deep muscular
relaxation by tensing and releasing tension from various parts of your body one part at a
Please lean back in your chair. Make yourself comfortable. Place both feet
flat on the floor. Rest your hands comfortably in your lap. Follow the
instructions on your screen.
Begin by stretching your legs as far as they can go . . . Relax. Stretch your
legs, again. Move your feet up, towards you, hold . . . turn your feet down, away
from you . . . Hold . . . Relax.
Now, tighten the muscles in your calves and those in your thighs. Tight.
Hold it, hold it . . . and relax.
Let your legs go back, slowly, down to their original position and relax all the
muscles in your feet, all the muscles in your calves, all the muscles in your thighs.
Let your legs be completely relaxed. And now, feel that wonderful relaxation
coming up from your toes, up your calves and your thighs. Feeling nicely relaxed,
very calm . . . and . . . very relaxed. Calm and relaxed. Take some time to
take your attention away from the screen. Focus on your legs and feel your
Now, stretch out your arms. Make two fists, tighten the muscles in your fingers.
Feel the tightness. Hold it, hold it . . . and relax. Let your arms go
down to their resting position. Feel that relaxation. Now stretch your arms
again. Tighten the muscles in your wrists, in your lower arms, in your upper arms .
. . Hold it, hold it . . . And, let go, just let go, let your arms go down to their
original position. Stop for a second, and take your time to notice that quieting
feeling of relaxation through your fingers, your hands, through your lower arms, and upper
arms. Let your arms go completely limp. Take your time to increase that
feeling of relaxation. Very relaxed, very calm, very relaxed and calm.
Now, arch your back backwards, raise your chest. Tighten the muscles in your
chest, your abdomen, your back, and your neck. Hold it . . . hold it . . . Let go of
the tension. Just let go of the tension. Notice your muscle relaxation.
Take time to feel the muscles relax in your chest, in your abdomen, in your neck, all over
your back. All your muscles feel nicely relaxed.
Now, tighten the muscles in your face, first the muscles around your forehead, then the
muscles around your eyes. Make them tighter. Hold it . . . hold it . . . and
relax. Now, tighten the muscles of your cheeks, the muscles around your mouth, the
muscles of your chin. Make them tighter . . . Hold it, hold it . . . and
relax. Let all the muscles in your face relax, first the muscles of your chin, then
the muscles around your mouth, the muscles of your cheeks, the muscles around your eyes,
the muscles of your forehead. Let all the tension drain from your face. Let
your chin sag if that feels good. Take your time to enjoy the feeling of relaxation.
Very relaxed and very calm. Relaxed and calm.
Now, breathe in through your nose, slowly, and deeply. Breathe the air down into
your abdomen first, then your chest, and your throat. Hold it, hold it . . . and
slowly breathe it out through your nose. Feel the relaxation. Breathe in,
tense up . . . Breathe out, relax.
Once again, take a very deep breath, hold it . . . hold it and slowly let it out.
Let go of all your tension, your frustrations, your anxieties, feeling more and
more relaxed. Relaxed and calm.
Now, take some time to scan your body. If you notice any tensional spot, take
your time to release that tension. Very good, very relaxed.
Now, take time to breathe in and out; stretch your body; focus on your surroundings.
Be ready to continue your day. Relaxed and calm. Focused and attentive.
If you would like to learn more about Relaxation, the Counseling Center has a variety
of resources to help you. Call or stop by the Counseling Center to make an
appointment to talk with a counselor. The Counseling Center is located across from
the Lee Drain Building, next to the Farrington Building. The telephone number is