HELP FOR STRESS DISORDERS

By Eleanor Eggers, Ph.D., LP, BCB, (Senior Fellow)

                         Lesson 6


You may proceed to lesson 6 when you feel you have mastered Lesson 5 and find that you are enjoying watching your body breathe by itself in a manner which is effortless, calm, regular, automatic, abdominal, and shallow.  It will probably take about a week.  Try to be patient and let it take as long as your body wants it to take.


This lesson deals with promoting a feeling of warmth in the solar plexus.  The solar plexus is the nerve center which regulates the function of the abdominal organs. It is located behind the stomach in the upper part of the abdomen.  When the solar plexus becomes warm during relaxation, one notices that the upper abdomen feels warm.


If the room is cool, it is permissible to place a small cover (e.g., a small pillow or folded towel) over your abdomen to hold in the warmth.  Or you may place your hands on your abdomen, one on the upper abdomen and one on the lower abdomen, making sure that they do not touch each other because that would present a distraction.  The warmth in your hands will help your abdomen, and the warmth in your abdomen will help your hands.  


Please begin by reviewing the information given under “Basic Information” and in Lesson 1.


Lie down on your bed or recliner chair and focus your attention in a very passive way on your arms and legs.   

Say to yourself (think) once:                  

  • My arms and legs are heavy and warm.  
  • I am completely calm.         


Shift your focus of attention to your heart and say to yourself one to three times:                   

  • My heartbeat is calm and regular.           


Shift your focus of attention to your breathing and          say to yourself one to three times:  

  • It breathes me.                               


Shift your focus of attention to your abdomen (solar plexus) and say to yourself over and over slowly for about a minute:                   


  • My abdomen (solar plexus) is warm. (You can choose to say either “abdomen” or “solar plexus”.)           

Then say to yourself several times:                   

  • I am completely calm.


You can stop saying the formulas after about a minute and then spend the rest of the twenty minutes just enjoying being in this state of deep relaxation.  Follow the directions given in Lesson 1 on how to maintain a completely passive state.  


At the end of the twenty minutes be sure to cancel by making two fists, bending and tensing both arms, taking a deep breath, and then opening your eyes.