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04/03/2013 09:05System Account

Relaxation

MP3s to help you learn to relax and manage symptoms of anxiety and stress.

  1. Relaxed Breathing (10 minutes) Male Voice / Female Voice
    Guiding you through relaxed breathing exercises.
  2. Progressive Muscular Relaxation (16 minutes) Male Voice / Female Voice
    Helping you to learn exercises to relax in everyday life.
  3. Passive Relaxation (11 minutes) Male Voice / Female Voice
    Talking you through a guided relaxation.
  4. Visualisation (15 minutes) Male Voice / Female Voice
    Helping you to create a relaxing mental image.

Stress and anxiety can affect anyone and can often lead to bodily feelings such as racing heart, muscle tension, fast breathing, sweating, shaking, feeling sick, churning stomach, tight chest and aches and pains. Relaxation and relaxed breathing can help you to get over these feelings and prevent them from building up.

These tracks can help you to learn how to relax your body and breathing but it will take regular practice for these exercises to work. Once you have learned how to relax, you will be able to reduce tension in your body any time, anywhere.

Instructions for using your Relaxation MP3s.

Relaxation is like any new skill, it takes time and practice to learn so don't worry if it takes a while before you feel it working. Keep going - you can get there!

Many people find that they get anxious or stressed at times when they can't listen to these MP3s to help them relax. So tracks 1 and 2 help you to learn exercises to use in everyday life. Follow the steps below to help you learn these exercises.

Step 1

  • Start with Track 1 or Track 2 and practise this daily for a week.
  • Set aside 20-30 minutes every day to listen to the track.
  • At first, choose a time when you don't feel too anxious or stressed, so you can learn the relaxation more easily.
  • Start by lying down to practise and make yourself comfortable in a quiet place. Download the tracks to an MP3 player if you want more privacy.
  • Switch on the tracks and close your eyes.
  • If you're falling asleep in the middle of the track, try listening to the tracks sitting up or earlier in the day.

Step 2

  • After a week or two, try using the MP3s when you are feeling stressed or anxious or before you do something that worries you. It is harder to relax at these times, so don't give up or start criticising yourself if you find it hard.

Step 3

  • When you feel ready, try to do the exercises from track 1 and 2 without listening to them. Try doing the exercises with your eyes open or when you are in different places or at any time you notice feeling anxious or stressed. If you are using Track 2, leave out the tension part of each exercise and see if you can combine the exercises to quickly relax your whole body.
  • Carry on doing this as often as you need to, any time, any place -you'll get better at overcoming anxiety and stress.

Tracks 3 and 4

Tracks 3 and 4 work differently - you get the relaxation from listening to them. Follow step 1 above to get the most benefit from them and listen as often as you need to.

Everyone is different and some people with a good imagination find tracks 3 and 4 work better for them - see what works for you.

Do not use these MP3s if you are concerned about the exercises causing you pain or discomfort. Consult your GP or your Healthcare practitioner.


(c) 2005 Psychology Department, St Johns Hospital.
All rights reserved. Permission is given for these materials (MP3s and instructions) to be downloaded by individuals for their sole personal (i.e. non-commercial) use and by NHS staff for use in the course of their normal professional work with clients/patients. Unauthorised copying, public performance, broadcasting, hiring or rental of the materials is prohibited.

Last Reviewed: 04/03/2013