2 Minutes to Full Body Relaxation

Traffic jams, cranky children, an overly hectic schedule. Any one of these stressors—or others—can push you close to the breaking point.

Here’s a 2-minute stress-easing tool that can help. It’s a relaxation skill called the body scan. It lets you relax each part of your body, from your head to your toes. Try it next time you feel tense or stressed:

  1. Sit or lie down in a quiet place.
  2. Close your eyes; take few deep, slow breaths.
  3. Start at the top of your head; notice any areas that feel tense or tight.
  4. Imagine breathing into the tense areas and feel the tension let go when you breathe out.
  5. Move to your neck; breathe into the tense spots; breathe out to let the tension go.
  6. Repeat until you reach your toes.
  7. Take 2 more long, deep breaths, and then open your eyes.

The more you practice this skill, the quicker you can become calm and relaxed.