Before you embark on your creative visualization journey, let’s talk a bit about creative visualization relaxation and why it’s so important to the creative process.
Stress is our mind and body’s number one enemy. It causes many diseases – both mental and physical. In order to get the most out of your creative visualization practice, it’s vital to learn first how to relax completely.
The best way to begin relaxing is a technique called “diaphragmatic breathing”.
Take a deep breath. Do your shoulders automatically move up? Or does your belly extend?
If your belly extends, you are already breathing using your diaphragm mostly. But most people breathe into their chest, and that the definition of the “stress breath”. Your creative body learns to stress breathe in times of fight-or-flight, and the longer you are stressed, the more your body relies on this type of respiration.
The good news is that it’s very easy to learn diaphragmatic breathing and the more you concentrate on doing this, the faster your body will re-learn that this is the type of breathing that is best for it.
To begin and activate your own creativity, lie down comfortably on your back. Put a pillow under your knees if your lower back bothers you in a flat position. Now, place one palm on your chest, and one palm on your belly, just above your belly button.
Take a deep breath while trying to keep your chest still, and only moving the hand that is on your belly. This can take some practice, as it will not feel normal (and may even be a bit uncomfortable) if you are normally a stress-breather.
Taking deep intakes of air into your belly is diaphragmatic breathing, and will result in your stomach muscles extending as you take in oxygen, and relaxing as you exhale.
As you breathe, concentrate on keeping the hand on your chest still by keeping your chest still as you breath. If that hand moves, that means you’re breathing into your chest instead of your diaphragm.
Ideally, do this a couple times a day, until you automatically breathe moving only the hand on your stomach area. Performing diaphragmatic breath exercises at night before bed will help your brain “remember” to breathe this way all night. You will wake up feeling more rested and you’ll have more consistent energy during your day.
Utilizing this specific type of breath before performing your creative visualization will enable you to quiet both your body and mind, and will help you focus better on your specific creative visualization goals.
Combining this simple exercise with conscious creative visualization relaxation of each of your major muscle groups will help set up both your mind and your body for greater success in your creative visualization practice.