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Visualization and Use of Imagery

Take a moment to relax.

Sit or lie in a comfortable position and close your eyes for a moment. Concentrate on your breathing, allowing yourself to become more relaxed with each breath you take. Each time you exhale, imagine your stress and tension draining down your spine, down your legs, and into the ground.

Each time you inhale and exhale, you may be surprised to find yourself twice as relaxed as you were a moment before. Twice as comfortable. Twice as peaceful. For with each breath, every cell of your body becomes at ease....as all the tension, all the discomfort, drains down your spine, down your legs, and into the ground. As you allow your stress to drain away, you feel more and more deeply relaxed. Your body feels deeply relaxed. Your arms and legs heavy and relaxed. Your face smooth and relaxed. Drifting into deeper relaxation....total relaxation.

Now, imagine a special place that is soothing and relaxing - perhaps a place you have been before, or a place you would like to go. Think of a place that's outdoors....that's beautiful....peaceful...serene and secure. A magical, special place. It may be a place you remember from your childhood, or it may not. Choose a special place where you feel safe and calm.

Experience what it would feel like to be at this imaginary place. Make yourself comfortable in your special place...and then sense it as fully as you can. Fill in the scene, using all sensory modes. What colors are present? What visual images make up the scene? Are there any sounds...wind, water, trees swaying in a breeze? Are there any smells or fragrances? How does your body feel? Can you feel the wind or the sun's warmth? Look around and notice the beauty of your own special place. Allow yourself to experience the feelings your scene elicits. Notice how your body feels in your magical place. You may feel tranquil, peaceful, serene and secure. Stretch out, relax and enjoy.

[Pause]

As you relax and enjoy how wonderful it feels to be here, remember you can return anytime you wish....simply by taking a few moments to relax yourself and letting your imagination carry you here. Each time you come to visit, you will find it even more beautiful, more serene, more peaceful...as new horizons are opened for you to experience. It's so easy...so accessible...so available to you.

Stay in your special place for whatever length of time you need. This is your place to come and relax anytime you wish. A haven anytime you want to fell totally relaxed... to sense the beauty around you, and within you....to sense the interconnections of life.

When you end this exercise, you will feel not only rested, relaxed and comfortable... but also energized with such a powerful sense of well-being that you will be able to respond to any demands that may arise...feeling confident and strong...feeling accepting of yourself. When you are ready to leave your special place, take a deep breath, and then open your eyes when you exhale.

As you end the exercise, don't hurry yourself. Take time to look around and notice where you are...and remember to breathe.

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