Have you ever been in the middle of a
stressful situation and wished you could be somewhere else—like lying on a
tropical beach? Guided imagery helps you use your imagination to take you to a
calm, peaceful place.
Guided imagery is a method
that helps you use your imagination to direct your thoughts toward a relaxing
or peaceful scene. Because of the way the mind and body are connected, when you
use your senses to imagine a scene, you can feel like you are actually there.
For example, if you are imagining a meadow in the morning, feel the crisp, cool
morning air. And as the sun rises, feel the warmth on your face. You may see
the dew sparkling in the sunlight, hear birds chirping, and smell the
Guided imagery uses the mind-body connection to make
you feel like you are experiencing something just by imagining
Because of the way the mind and body are
connected, guided imagery can make you feel like you are experiencing something
just by imagining it. It works really well when you engage all five of your
senses (touch, smell, taste, hearing, and sight) in the process.
Continue to Why?
Imagining yourself in a
calm, peaceful setting can help you relax and relieve stress. Guided imagery
may help healing, learning, creativity, and performance. It can also help you
feel more in control of your emotions and thoughts and help improve your
attitude, health, and sense of well-being.
Guided imagery can help you relax.
Guided imagery can relieve stress, help you
relax, and give you a sense of well-being. It can also help you improve your
attitude and feel more in control of your thoughts and emotions.
Continue to How?
To give guided
imagery a try, follow these steps:
It may help to have an instructor or audio recording to
follow. You can also use a script (a set of written instructions), but hearing
the instructions may be a better way to relax into the process.
You can do guided imagery with audio recordings, an
instructor, or scripts to lead you through the process.
You can use audio recordings, an instructor, or
scripts to lead you through guided imagery. But at first you may want to use an
audio recording or have an instructor guide you, rather than using written
scripts. This can make it easier to relax.
Continue to Where?
Now that you have read this
information, you have the tools you'll need to give guided imagery a try. See
if this relaxation method can work for you.
If you want to try another relaxation technique, see:
Return to topic:
Other Works ConsultedFreeman L (2009). Imagery. In L Freeman, ed., Mosby’s Complementary and Alternative Medicine: A Research-Based Approach, 3rd ed., pp. 252–282. St. Louis: Mosby Elsevier.
May 15, 2012
Patrice Burgess, MD - Family Medicine & Steven Locke, MD - Psychiatry
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