I recently rediscovered Autogenic Training, which is an effective technique for reducing stress and anxiety and the onset of panic attacks. It is a simple technique but works really well to restore the balance between the sympathetic and parasympathetic branches of the autonomic nervous system. If that sounds complicated, let’s just say it’s very relaxing!
If you feel like giving it a go, follow the instructions below. Leave a comment and let me know how you got on 🙂
As you lie quietly with your eyes closed, your legs straight, and your arms by your sides, repeat each of the following steps 5 times in your head, and after the fifth time use the affirmation “I am completely calm”. After each step move on to the next one and repeat the process. Work through the 6 steps in order and you should feel gradually more relaxed as the steps progress.
- My right arm is heavy
- My right arm is warm
- My heart is beating calmly and regularly
- My breathing is calm and regular
- My abdomen is flowingly warm
- My forehead is pleasantly cool
You can end the session with the affirmation “Tonight I will sleep deeply and peacefully” – repeat this five times as well, and then just rest in the peace of your body for a few minutes. Alternatively, if you have more time, you can repeat the process, going through the steps one by one a second time.
The more you practise this simple training, the more aware of your body you will be, and the easier you will find it to move through the steps. It should make you feel grounded, present, and relaxed.