I haven’t practiced meditation in a few years, but whenever I’m feeling extra anxious, overwhelmed, heavy, or sad, I like to close my eyes and visualize moments of peace or fullness. I’ve been reading a book from the 1890s called, “The Technique of Rest” and this quote really hit home:
“She lives in a perpetual sense of not being able to draw one full breath.”
Do you ever feel this way? It’s why my word of the year this year is “breathe” and why I’m writing this blog post today. We can all benefit from ways to calm our nervous systems.
Below are five mini meditations or visualizations to help you take a full, deep breath and remember that you can experience serenity through your own imagination.
Let’s go to a cabin in the woods and rest
Close your eyes and let’s go to a cabin in the woods. A warm fireplace is crackling beside you, you’re snuggled up with the softest blanket, your favorite hot beverage, and a loved one, pet, or book. You can see the pine trees and the lake right outside your window. Light snow starts to fall to the ground. Take a deep breath in, then out. Let go of your worries and relax.
You are warm. You are safe. You are resting.
Fill your lungs with fresh air and gratitude
Close your eyes and take a leisurely walk through the forest. The leaves and small branches are crunching below your feet. The cool breeze fills your lungs as you take a deep breath in and out. You smell the freshness of the moss and flowers. Look up and you will see the blue sky with rays of sunshine peeking through the trees. Birds are chirping, squirrels are playing, and a small stream of water trickles through the rocks next to you. Feel your tension release and your soul expand.
You are here. You are present. You are grateful.
Remember that you are as majestic as the mountains
Close your eyes and picture yourself standing at the top of a mountain. You reach your hands down to meet your feet and feel your body stretch in all the right places. You inhale the fresh mountain air, then exhale. Inhale and exhale. You can feel the cool, crisp wind on your skin. You look out over the horizon at the massive mountain tops, rolling hills, and lush green trees. The clouds are floating by and taking any negative thoughts with them. The sun starts to set, and the sky is turning a magnificent orange, pink, and purple color. You think about how much you have in common with this beautiful landscape.
You are strong. You are significant. You are majestic.
Match the rhythm of your breath to the ocean tide
Close your eyes and transport yourself to an island. You are floating effortlessly on the top of a pool next to the ocean. The top of your body feels flush and warm from the rays of the sun while the bottom half of your body feels cool and relaxed from the soothing water. The tension releases from your jaw, shoulders, arms, and legs. Your entire body softens. You can hear the sound of the ocean waves and smell the freshness of the ocean air. You take a few deep breaths in and out and your breath begins to match the rhythm of the ocean tide. Seagulls call out above and you open your eyes to see a bright blue sky.
You feel peaceful. You feel calm. You feel relaxed.
Imagine a moment filled with abundance and love
Close your eyes and imagine you are sitting at a large table in a beautiful courtyard with twinkling lights above you. All of your favorite people are gathered around the table, including those that have passed away. You can hear the sound of your favorite song playing in the background and the laughter of your loved ones. You are eating your favorite meal and drinking your favorite beverage and you pause for a moment to savor your last bite. You take a deep breath in and out and feel an immense sense of gratitude. You notice everyone getting out small pieces of paper. Now you hear each person reading to you. They share why they love you, a poem they wrote for you, a memory you shared together. You smile like never before and feel a deep sense of connection wash over you.
You are loved. Your heart is full. Your life is filled with abundance.
I hope these visualizations were helpful and you can use them when you’re feeling stressed or trying to fall asleep. Do you have a moment or a place that you like to visualize? Share with all of us in the comments below.
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