On this page you will find several relaxation techniques that can be done in 5 minutes or less
Slowing the Breath
Sit back in your seat and begin to focus on your abdominal area. Breathe in slowly counting one, two, three, four, five. Then, breathe out counting one, two, three, four, five. As you breathe in let the tummy expand, and as you breathe out let the tummy sink in. Repeat.
Flex and Release
Tighten your fists as tight as you can and hold for the count of 10. Then release the tension and feel the difference between tension and relaxation. Repeat by tightening your jaw for the count of 10. Then release the tension and feel the tension flow out of your jaw and facial muscles. Repeat for other areas of the body that feel tight and tense. Repeat.
While breathing in, gently reach up toward the ceiling or sky and push up with your hands as if pushing on a ceiling or pushing a ball toward the sky. Then turn the hands over and, as you breathe out, let the hands slowly and gently float back down as if they were as light as feathers. Repeat.
Brief Guided Imagery
Take a moment to sit back in your seat and close your eyes. After taking a few slow breaths, begin to imagine a relaxing scenery such as a garden, waterfall, or mountain path with pine trees. Imagine yourself sitting in this serene environment for a few moments. Use the senses to fully imagine the sights and sounds you would experience, what you would feel on your skin, or smell and taste in the air.
Internal Mantras and Affirmations
With eyes open or closed, begin to repeat a relaxation mantra to yourself such as:
"I am calm and peaceful"
"I breathe healing energy in, and toxic energy out"
"Stop the Worry. I won't listen"
"Staying mindful of my breath, I am present and alert"
Gentle Self Massage
Gently massage the face and head by starting at the scalp and massaging from the front hairline to the back, including the tendons running down the neck. Then slowly massage the forehead, eyebrows, sinuses and nose, cheeks, jaw line, and finally massage the top of the shoulders by reaching back over each and pulling forward along the muscle. Repeat.
Five Minutes with your Pet
Take five minutes from whatever it is you are doing to pet the dog, cat, horse, bird or whatever pet it is you have. Research shows this reduces stress and blood pressure and your animal will love you for it.
Play relaxation music
Gentle and relaxing music can set a mood and build body memory so that whenever you turn it on, the body automatically relaxes. Have some stored on your MP3, or somewhere at home so you can find what you need to set a stress free mood for whatever task it is you are doing.
Put on Lotion
Take 5 minutes to rub lotion on your hands and arms. Not only is this a brief and gentle massage, but many lotions also have great fragrances that provide a brief aroma-therapy to help you relax.
Free Your Feet
Remove your shoes and let your feet stretch, air out and feel the elements; be that grass, earth, or just air. If you are at home you can also give your feet a quick soak by running a small amount of bath water to warm and sooth them. If you are somewhere else, then gently massage the feet before putting your shoes back on.
Have a cup of Tea
A cup of tea is all the more relaxing when you drink it mindfully. Taking the full 5 minutes to sit back, wrap your hands around the cup, and be mindful of each sip as well as the aroma and look of the tea and cup.