This is just a selection of some of the strategies that form part of our body basics programme.
Cue yourself in
Create an area or an environment that is pleasant to work in
Green acts as a balance
Blue is cool and calming
Orange is creative and good for relationships
Use a room spray or diffliser
Lavender and camomile mixed with mandarin provide a stress free day
Roll some aroma on your arm
Massage hands, temples, back of neck
Is it OK?
Would you like me to?
It's OK not to want to participate at every session
Start each activity by feeling calm
Focus on the breathing - breathing in calm and relaxed
Put your hand on your chest/tummy - Calm and relaxed
Breathe and blow - Blow on your hand
Breathe deeply, breathe slowly - Listen - stroke your ears
Breathe deeply, breathe slowly - Sigh - sigh the breath out
Breathe deeply, breathe slowly - Smile
Sit quietly with your eyes closed, cover your eyes with hands or lower your head.
Actively manage the moodSitting/thinking/preparing - Belly breathing
Practise Body Wise
Face the person
Make eye contact
Use a calm voice
Stay calm and relaxed
Use a mantra
Build up conditioned responses for anxious moments:
Calm and relaxed - Blow on my hands
Hands on my head help me think
Hands on my chest help me breathe
Hands on my tulrmy help me relax
Hands in my lap - Hands are relaxed
Feet on the floor - Feet are relaxed
I'm okay, I can do this
Hand or muscle Clench - Tight and relax
Stretch and relax
Deep Pressure works best
Squeeze down your arms
Press your thumb into your palms
Make small circles in the hair or forehead
Happy hands help me think
Clasp your fingers - I'm under control
Hold Thumb - When I'm afraid
Hold Finger - When I'm anxious
Hold Middle Finger - When I'm angry
Jaw relax - Fingers resting on your cheek bone
Chin relax - Fingers above or below the lips
Make a sound,sing and shout about it
This will decrease the heartbeat and pulse rate
Try laughing Yoga
Clown or Ha Breath - Raise shoulders and shrug as you breathe out
Circle - Trace the shape with your fingers as you breathe
Stream train breathing
Breathe out to make a gentle hissing sound
Close the lips so you breathe out through the throat and nose, so you hear a rasping/shunting sound - Shunt your shoulders as the wheels go round
Birthday cake blowing - Blow on each Finger - Phew
Listen to the sound of your breath - Ha Hiss SHh Ssss
Humming bee breath
Yawn and stretch
Vigorous exercise increases alpha wave patterns associated with relaxation.
Exercise decreases muscle tension whilst increasing heart rate and circulation.
Get body wise by: rubbing, pounding, clapping, stamping, swinging, twisting.
On the spot activity can be as aerobic as gross motor movement
Row the boat
Stir the pudding
Ring the bell
Hold any posture in stillness, take a calming breath,
blow out loudly and then let go.
Create happy books
People who are distressed/depressed aren't getting their 'happy quota' and will need help to think about something else at the time of stress.
Build a portfolio of pleasures to recreate happy memories and also to reinforce the positive aspects of themselves.
This story massage comes from The Association For Massage In Schools programme and is practiced on the back.
Once upon a time there was a big yellow..... that warmed the whole world
But look, clouds appear and cover the sun
Then the wind comes and blows harder... and harder... and harder...
...until the wind turned into a tornado and hurricane and typhoon Then came lightning...
Then came the rain...
And it rained harder and harder
...until the rain turned into .... and more hail
Then it began to snow and everything was white and beautiful
And the only thing to see was the cat that climbed up the roof of the house... and another cat... and another cat
Finally a fog appeared and everything became still
Until the sun came out again and burned the fog away and warmed up the earth once again.
Content is © 2002 Heathermount TLC. Our thanks to Stephanie Lord for giving permission for this paper to be made available
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