Relaxation techniques are tools to help you deal with the stress of quitting smoking (or any other stress). Practice one or more of the following methods every day.
Meditation - Find a comfortable chair and sit erect with your feet on the floor. Focus your mind on your breathing - not trying to change the breath, but simply noticing it. Every time your mind wanders (which it will); simply bring your attention back to your breath. Start with sitting for just a few minutes, and gradually work up to 20-30 minutes of silent meditation.
Massage - You can talk your spouse or significant other into a few minutes of massage each day. Or, treat yourself to a professional massage with the money you're saving on cigarettes.
Visualization - You can purchase visualization CD's that walk you through relaxing scenes like a walk on the beach, or other peaceful settings (Relaxation Body Scan & Guided Imagery for Well-Being). You can also do your own visualization by sitting quietly and taking yourself on a visual journey that is relaxing and peaceful to you.
Progressive Muscle Relaxation - This is a great exercise to do before bedtime. Lying down, close your eyes and allow your muscles to feel lose and heavy. Take several deep breaths. Start at your head and work down to your toes. Contract (tighten) one muscle group for 4-6 seconds and then allow the muscles to relax. Notice the feelings of relaxation. Gradually and slowly move through every muscle group in your body. End by tightening every muscle in your body and then releasing. Feel the relaxation over your entire body.
- practice this relaxation technique several times each day.