Someone closing their eyes for the relaxation response

The Simple technique for eliciting the Relaxation Response consists of the 8 steps shown below. Since this is probably the simplest technique for bringing about the Relaxation Response, it should take only a few minutes to learn the basics.

Before you begin regular practice, you should give some thought to step 1. Step 1 is where you choose a word or phrase, which this website calls your "relaxation agent". You may only need to do step 1 one time, unless you want to change your word or phrase later.

After you have initially chosen your relaxation agent word or phrase, practicing this technique should become very simple and routine. Health benefits build up over time and usually do not depend on any feelings that you may have during the Relaxation Response.

We are not aware of any problems that people have had using open techniques for the Relaxation Response. However, it is good to be aware of problems that some people have had with some traditional practices. These problems are discussed in the precautions section. Also, please read our disclaimer before choosing to start any practice on your own.

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5. Assume a Passive Attitude

You may notice that other thoughts come to your mind besides your relaxation agent. When this happens, then gently and easily bring your mind back to repeating the relaxation agent word or phrase that you have chosen.

8. Let Your Body Adapt Before Activity

Your body may be in a state of deep rest after bringing about the Relaxation Response. Therefore, just as when you are coming out of a deep sleep, it is wise to give your body a few minutes before getting up. It is usually best to keep your eyes closed during this time. A common practice is to use about 1 minute with eyes closed for every 10 minutes that you experienced the Relaxation Response.