There are several powerful ways you can dissolve stress and open to more joy with meditation.
One great way is to welcome positive states like gratitude, appreciation, love, and joy. A wonderful example of this in action is my open-focus gratitude meditation. Try it.
Another good example is some of the work we’re doing in my free “Millionaire Mindset” sessions which finished this week.
But welcoming the positive can be over-done. Especially when you feel a sense of forcing or craving.
That’s when the tools of “inner clearing” come in handy.
My free “How To Clear Anything In 7 Days” event which finished a few weeks ago gives you a wonderful set of tools for dissolving stress and negative patterns. But once again, this approach can be overdone too. One of the limitations of the inner clearing approach is we can sometimes get stuck chasing our tails.
In fact, both approaches (welcoming positive and negative) work best when you balance them with time spent doing “here-now” meditation. This kind of meditative practice can bring a sense of deep tranquility, which can be very pleasurable.
My good friend Kevin Schoeninger is a master of the “tranquility” approach.
The secret, is focusing into certain “relaxation cues” that naturally cause you to relax, let go, and experience deep peace of mind.
Read on as Kevin outlines some basics of this approach, as well as “3 easy ways to relax and lower stress,” in his own words.
– Matt Clarkson
3 Easy Ways To Relax And Lower Stress
– by Kevin Schoeninger
Unless you live under a rock, you are likely well
aware of your body’s stress response!
The pace and intensity of our current global society
gives us ample personal experience with time pressure,
muscle tension, anxiety, fear, and, in the extreme, the
feeling that your head just might “explode.”
Stress researchers have called this the “fight or flight”
response because it comes from your body’s ability to
get geared up to face, or run from, perceived threats to
your survival, health, happiness, success, and well-being.
The fight or flight response is helpful and effective
for dealing with immediate dangers such as a natural
disaster, car accident, impending deadline, or
emergency situation. However, when stressors are
persistent and the stress response becomes chronic, we
suffer from a host of stress-related effects, including
high blood pressure, heart attacks, indigestion,
insomnia, irritability, and anger, to name just a few.
We also exhaust ourselves and suppress our immune
response so we become susceptible to any and all
discomforts and diseases.
Fortunately, our bodies have an amazing balancing
mechanism–“the relaxation response.” Dr. Herbert
Benson popularized this term in 1975 with the release
of his book by that name. In his book, Dr. Benson
details how you can consciously activate your body’s
parasympathetic nervous system, your body’s natural
rest and recovery mode.
Since that time, countless self-care techniques have
been tested for their ability to activate the
relaxation response. Among these are exercise,
stretching, self-massage, and mind-body training such
as meditation, t’ai chi, and yoga. All these are
phenomenal practices which I highly recommend. They
also take some degree of time commitment and practice.
Let’s talk about three simple things you can do, anytime,
anywhere, to shift out of stress mode and into relaxation.
I suggest that you practice these in a quiet, private
environment first, so you can focus your attention and
learn to do them well. Then, you can take them on the
road and into any situation or environment to help you
find your relaxed, calm, center in the midst of whatever
is going on around you.
3 Easy Ways to Relax
1. Take slow, deep, conscious breaths
It’s a good thing that your body takes care of
breathing for you, 24/7, whether you are consciously
aware of it or not. However, taking a few moments to
become aware of your breathing, make it slower and
deeper, and feel it inside your body is a great way to
Imagine there are two vertical balloons that stretch
from your lower abdomen up to your collarbones. As you
inhale, imagine and feel as if these balloons fill up
from bottom to top. When you exhale, imagine and feel
as if these balloons empty out from top to bottom.
Slow your breathing down so that you inhale to a
four-second count, pause, exhale to a five-second
count, pause, and repeat. Count 10 of these slow,
deep, conscious breaths and feel how your body relaxes.
2. Feel the space inside your body
Researchers have found that feeling almost any space
within your body can have a calming effect. To
practice feeling your inner body, focus on any
body-part and feel the space inside your skin. You
might start with your hands and/or your feet.
For many people, the hands are a good place to begin
because they are highly sensitive. Relax your hands
and rest them, palms-down, on your thighs. Begin by
feeling the space inside one finger on one hand, say
your index finger. Then, expand your inner feeling to
include the rest of your fingers, one at a time.
Expand your sensation to include your whole hand. You
can then do the same with the other hand. You can try
this with your feet as well.
If you enjoy the practice and it works well for you,
you can expand your inner feeling to include your whole
body. As you get good at this, it feels great! And no
one, except you, knows that you’re doing it.
My Core Energy Meditation program gives you an
excellent, easy and comprehensive practice for
doing this. Check it out here:
3. Shift your perspective
When you find yourself caught up in stress, insert a
mental pause, and step back from what you are doing.
Observe what you are thinking, feeling, or doing at the
moment. Witness your behavior without reacting to it
or judging it as “good” or “bad.” Simply notice what is
happening. Realize that whatever you are doing, you
can choose to do something different and more effective.
Take a moment to imagine what you might think, feel, or
do differently that would change the situation for the
better. Could you see the situation from another
person’s point of view? Could you listen better?
Could you express your true feelings in a way that is
not blaming or accusing? Could you take a deep breath,
feel inside your body, and come from a more relaxed
Practice these three simple techniques often and notice
how you begin to master the stressful situations in
Enjoy your practice!
Kevin & Matt
The Mind-Body Training Company
P.S. Be sure to try my instant meditation – the “Core
Energy Technique” that can be used to shift any
unwanted thought, feeling or belief – including stress:
P.P.S. To take this to the next level, I recommend you
check out my Core Energy Meditation program: