By Wayne F. Perkins Educational Hypnotherapist
Definition of Stress
What is stress? Stress is a psychological and physiological reaction in our mind and body to an external or internal stimulus. Some stressful reactions to stimuli include rapid heart beat, blood flow being diverted to the arms and legs, dryness of mouth and an overall feeling of panic. This is a genetic response that was very necessary eons ago when a saber-toothed tiger started chasing us across the plains, hungry for his next meal. We developed a response to speed up the heart and send blood to the arms and legs in anticipation of a fight or a flight.
At home, at school or at work, when stress kicks in, we receive the same physiological reactions in our bodies even though we are not faced with a true life or death situation.
Isn’t that amazing?
Stress is cumulative in nature. Every stressful situation you confront compounds and it builds over time, much like an investment in a tax-free security or pension plan. Many times the event that pushes us over the edge, the event that triggers a fight or altercation, is the last or most recent event. Several other episodes of stress were handled in a way where we ignored the warning signs in our bodies until we could take the pressure no more. Stressful events compound over time until we can’t handle them. We may react sometimes in a violent or hurtful way.
Using self-hypnosis training to manage stress capitalizes on the same principles, the compounding of our reactions, only in the reverse. We use self-hypnosis to learn to relax. We use this relaxation many times during the day. We use self-hypnosis many times during the week, month, and year. We use self-hypnosis during times when stress is not present. We use self-hypnosis during times when stress is present.
William James a philosopher at the turn of the 20th Century stated that a person” can not experience stress and be totally relaxed at the same time.” It takes time when one is experiencing stress to bring himself down to relaxation. It takes time when one is totally relaxed to bring them into a stressful state of mind and body.
All we need to do is to find times during the day when we can relax very deeply and soundly. The more time we can devote to relaxation, the more compounding of relaxation in our body and mind, and we will feel much better.
There are two parts to the exercise. The first involves teaching you self-hypnosis, and the second will give you the hypnotic “prescription” or “script” necessary to learn stress reduction or relaxation management.
Everyone who reads this and follows the directions will be successful. I look forward to your success. Please write, e-mail or call me with your success story.Thank you very much in advance for trusting me to give you this information. I believe in you, too!
Here is the self-hypnosis instruction you need to reduce stress.
Read this information into a tape recorder or other type of recording device. If none is available, have a friend you can trust read this information to you. Make sure that the script is read slowly and distinctly. If you sound tired at the time you recorded this, it will help you mimic the behavior of the person reading. You will then respond by becoming tired or deeply relaxed. As you relax your mind will become alive and alert.
Be focused and ready to accept this information. When you the word PAUSE , stop reading and pause from about 15 to 20 seconds. If you feel better with longer pauses, that is fine, too. Whatever feels relaxing and comfortable to you will be okay.
This is going to be fun! It will also be very beneficial to you! Remember that all hypnosis is self-hypnosis. You are always in control. You have all the power necessary to make positive changes in your own life. You may have found out already in life that you also have the power to make all the negative changes in your life. Let’s focus on the positive changes.
Find an area in you home or place of work where you can have about three to five minutes to yourself. That’s right. Only three to five minutes time increments are needed in your quest for success.
After practicing this exercise many times, you may reduce the time to only one or two minutes. Now, read the following your recorder, or have your friend read them to you.
Sit up in a comfortable chair or lie on a couch or a bed with your hands resting in your lap or by your side…take three very slow, deep breaths… Each time you inhale, focus on filling your lungs with clean, fresh air…as you exhale, feel all of the tension leave your lungs. You feel good, you feel fine, you feel perfectly relaxed…Each and every deep breath that you take allows you to go deeper and deeper…each and every sound that you hear allows you to go deeper and deeper. Nothing will disturb you, concentrate on each of the words and ideas presented to you. You will succeed!
Now close your eyes down tight, shutting out the light. One, breathe in, hold it…,let it out slowly…, let all of your muscles relax…you feel good, you feel fine…you feel perfectly, relaxed. Two, breathe in, hold that deep breath…push it out…let all of your tension leave your lungs. Three, breathe in…, hold it, let it out slowly, let all of your muscles relax. You are gaining control over the powerful subconscious part of your brain. You are relaxing more with each and every deep breath that you take, and each and every sound that you hear.
Focus your attention on your breathing. How does it feel to breath so deeply? Can you allow your self to relax at even a greater depth? Let yourself go deeper and sounder into this pleasant state of mind…You feel good, you feel fine, you feel perfectly relaxed…Listen and pay attention to your body…What does it sound like to hear your own breathing.? Does the sound assist you in relaxing even more?…Breathe deeply and relax…You are gaining control over the powerful subconscious part of your mind.
Focus your attention on the sounds that you may be hearing around you…and as you do, you begin to find these noises pleasing and relaxing as well. Wouldn’t it be interesting to be able to increase the volume of the external sounds by just thinking about them…As you do make the sounds louder you find your body sinking down into the security of your bed…your couch, or your chair…sinking down, drifting down…you may feel a light or heavy sensation and this sensation begins to assist you in relaxing deeply…more deeply relaxed than ever before. Nothing will disturb you…if an emergency comes up you will be able to respond quickly and with a clear head. You are gaining control over the powerful subconscious part of your mind…Now wouldn’t it be interesting if you could make the sounds around you go softer and softer, softer and softer until they drift away…you are gaining control of your own mind…Nothing will disturb you.
You feel good, you feel fine, you feel perfectly and completely relaxed…Now concentrate on the sound of your breathing again…As you do, concentrate on your breathing…your muscles relax deeply…You are relaxing deeper and sounder than ever before. Relaxed and focused concentration, that is what self-hypnosis is. You are relaxing deeper and sounder. I am relaxing, deeper and sounder.
Picture in your mind that you are looking at the night sky…The sky you picture may have stars and planets and a full moon, or it may have a heavy cloud cover and be very, very, dark. Whatever sky you picture in your mind will be the correct sky…As you picture this sky, you are relaxing deeper and sounder than ever before. As the sky becomes clearer and clearer in your mind, you are relaxing deeper and sounder than ever before. I am relaxing, very, very deeply.
Now, picture a large wheel right in the middle of your night sky. It may be a large wagon wheel, an automobile wheel, or a bicycle wheel. Whatever wheel you picture in your own mind will be the correct wheel. I picture the wheel in the middle of the night sky. As you picture the wheel in the middle of the night sky, your body is relaxing deeply, soundly, and perfectly. Now picture the large wheel moving toward or away from you. As it mover toward you, it becomes bigger in the night sky…As it moves away from you, it gets smaller and smaller. As the wheel movers either toward or away from you, your relaxation grows deeper and more pronounced. Every muscle and fiber in your body relaxes, now.
Now, picture the wheel turning either clockwise or counterclockwise. As the wheel turns, your body goes loose, and limp and lazy. All of your cares are drifting away. You feel good, you feel fine, you feel perfectly, relaxed. Let the wheel turn either toward or away from you. Let the wheel rotate clockwise or counterclockwise. See the wheel turning and moving in your night sky.
Part II. The Prescription
Each and every time you picture this wheel, moving and turning, your body will relax, deeply. You will be calm and confident and filled with the self-satisfaction for becoming master of your body and master of your mind. Each and every time you think about this scene, the scene of the night sky, your body and mind will respond quickly. Your body will relax instantly, and your mind will more alert, attentive, and you will be able to concentrate much better. You will concentrate better than ever, before.
In a few moments, I am going to emerge from self-hypnosis. I will feel more energetic than ever. I will feel alive, alert, awake, and ready for today’s challenges. Each and every time I practice this exercise, I will become better at relaxing. My periods of deep relaxation will become part of my every day activities. My deep relaxation will assist me in achieving my goals. I am the master of my body. I am the master of my mind. I am the master of my emotions. Never before, has anyone ever existed that is exactly like me. I am unique. I am in control of my body and my actions.
I am going to count to five. When I reach five, allow your eyes to open and you will feel wide awake. You will feel great. You will feel better than ever before. Each time you listen to the induction and the hypnotic prescriptions, you will feel better than ever, before.
One…you begin to feel better…Two…becoming more aware of what is going on around you…Three…Four…Get ready, now…and Five…Wide awake, alert, feeling better than you have ever felt, before.
How do you feel? Stretch, yawn, get ready now to experience today’s activities.
Listen to your tape or have your friend come over and read this script to you many times. Repetition of the exercise will help you win the battle over stress.
Part III. Self-hypnosis Exercise A.
The following is an abbreviated self-hypnosis exercise that will help you win the war on stress, even when you only have brief one or two minute periods of time to perform the self-hypnosis exercise.
1. Sit up in a chair with your feet flat on the floor and your hands and arms resting in your lap or hanging down at your sides. Close your eyes down tight, shutting out the light.
2. Prescription. Think or say the following words to yourself. “I am gaining control over the relaxation in my life.” “I am relaxing more with each and every breath that I take.”
3. Take three slow, deep breaths. Each time you exhale, feel all of the tension, leaving your lungs.
4. Think of a very calm and relaxing place in your mind. Picture a scene by a lake or an ocean, relaxing in the mountains or in the forests, or picture yourself sleeping deeply in your bed at night. Whatever scene you picture, will be the correct one. You may want to picture the night sky. You may want to picture the wheel, rotating and moving in the night sky. Whatever scene you picture, it will be the correct one. The scene will assist you in relaxing, deeply.
5. Say to yourself that at the count of five, your eyes will open and you will be better relaxed than ever before. You will feel alive, alert, and ready to take on the day’s activities.
Carry these restful feelings into your day. The best way to beat stress is to increase the periods of time that you are perfectly, relaxed. Your restful feelings will stay with you the rest of your day.
Practice listening to the first exercise along with the stress prescription at least once per day. If you listen in the morning, you will be setting the stage for the rest of your restful day.
Practice the short version as many times as you can during your day. We all have a tendency to think about those things that will hurt us. We all think of these things, many times a day. Why not think of restful thoughts as well? Place many of these one or two minute rest periods in your day. You will defeat stress and replace it with calm and peaceful self-confidence. You will become an inspiration to others!