Stress is pervasive in life today particularly as many people are preparing to head back to school amid the continuing corona crisis. This bonus episode offers a guided meditation called Paired Muscle Relaxation, a DBT Skill that can dramatically reduce stress with regular practice. Make yourself comfortable and get ready to relax.
Thanks so much for joining me today for A Therapist Takes Her Own Advice. If you connected with what you heard here, and you want to work with me, go to my website, rebekahshackney.com and send a message through my contact page. And please subscribe, rate and review on Apple Podcasts or wherever you listen to podcasts.
Hi, this is Rebekah Shackney, and this is A Therapist Takes Her Own Advice.
In Wednesday's episode, we talked to school superintendent, Dr. Ray Sanchez. He spoke about the tremendous stress that he has to cope with. As he's working hard to alleviate the anxieties, families of his district are experiencing from the upcoming back to school season. He encouraged everyone to make time for self care. Taking his lead today, I'm offering a guided meditation called paired muscle relaxation, a DBT skill that can dramatically reduce stress with regular practice.
This is a simple exercise inhale. As you tense, muscle groups noticing the feeling of tension. Exhale. Say the word relaxed to yourself. As you relax the muscles, noticing the feeling of letting go. When you first tense muscles before relaxing them, your muscles release more deeply than with relaxing alone. If your mind drifts away during this meditation gently, bring yourself back to my voice without judgment.
Now, loosen tight clothing, sit or lay in a comfortable position with legs uncrossed, close your eyes and take a few long slow, deep breaths.
Inhale and make fists with both hands and pull fists up on the wrists. Exhale and relax.
Inhale and make fists and bend both arms up to touch your shoulders. Exhale and relax.
Inhale. Pull both shoulders up to your ears. Exhale and relax.
Inhale, pull eyebrows, close together. Wrinkle your forehead, exhale and relax. Inhale. Shut eyes, tightly exhale and relax.
Inhale, scrunch up your nose. Bring your upper lips and cheeks up toward your eyes. Exhale and relax.
Inhale. Press your lips together. Bring the edges of your lips back toward your years. Exhale and relax.
Inhale. Put your teeth together and your tongue pushing up on the upper mouth. Exhale and relax. Push your head back on the chair floor or bed, or push your chin down towards your chest. Exhale and relax.
Take a deep breath and hold it. Exhale and relax.
Inhale. Arch your back and bring your shoulder blades together. Exhale and relax.
Inhale. Hold your stomach in tightly, exhale and relax.
Inhale and tighten your glutes and your hips. Exhale and relax.
Inhale, and put your legs out and tense. Your thighs, exhale and relax.
Inhale with your legs out. Point your toes down, exhale and relax.
Inhale with your legs. Point your toes together. Heels out toes curled under exhale and relax.
Inhale and tense. All of your muscle groups, exhale and relax.
Now take a few more slow, long, deep breaths. And when you're ready, open your eyes and return your focus to the room.
Remember this exercise is most effective when practiced regularly, time might be tight right now. Still it's imperative to take time for self care. It doesn't just feel good. It's good for you. You owe it to yourself and your loved ones.
Thanks so much for joining me today for a therapist, takes their own advice. If you connected with what you heard here and you want to work with me, go to my website, Rebekahshackney.com and send me a message through my contact page. And if you have enjoyed what you've heard here, please subscribe, rate, and review on Apple Podcasts or wherever you listen.