Relaxation techniques

Relaxation is important but can be very difficult when you’re stressed, especially when you have a lot of thoughts racing around your mind. Exploring relaxation can help you look after yourself when you’re feeling stressed. While relaxation might not make what you are stressed or worried about go away, it can give you a mental break from these feelings and help you refocus.

People relax in different ways—some unwind with a good book or Netflix, others prefer active things like walking, sports, or yoga. What helps one person unwind might not work for someone else. In addition to activities that help you unwind, it can be useful to learn a “relaxation response” to calm you down when you are stressed. There are many techniques to help relax your body and mind. Relaxation techniques can be as simple as relaxation breathing exercises. Other techniques include guided imagery, where you imagine calming scenes to quiet your thoughts, or mindfulness which helps you pay attention to the present moment.

These techniques can be helpful when you’re feeling stressed, busy, or worried. Not every technique will suit everyone, so if one doesn’t work for you, it’s okay to try a different one instead.

Resources for Relaxation:

Walk in my Shoes offers video and audio guides for mindful relaxation practices, guided mindfulness exercises, and wellness activities designed to calm your mind and ease feelings of anxiety or stress.

The Mindfulness and Relaxation Centre at Beaumont Hospital offers relaxation and mindfulness exercises to help you unwind and manage stress effectively.

Mental Health Ireland offers a variety of guided practices including body scans, breath awareness, gratitude exercises, grounding techniques, and self-compassion practices to support your well-being.

Additionally, some people find relaxation apps helpful. Visit Jigsaw for recommendations on mental health apps that provide relaxation exercises and tips.

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