Chiari Online Support Group

Visualization Exercise

So you aren't feeling well and things are difficult. It is really easy when we are in pain or when things aren't going well to focus on the pain and how awful we feel. Believe me, I have been there and still struggle with that from time to time. Instead of focusing on the pain, let's try a visualization exercise. Below is an example of something to try:

This can be done anywhere; however, it might work best at first if you do this in a quiet environment. You can sit, stand, lay in bed/couch, anywhere that is comfortable. For me, I like to play soothing music in the background, very quietly. Start by taking a few deep breaths thru your nose. Breathe in for 2 seconds and breathe out for 4 seconds. Count the seconds in your head. Focus on how the air feels coming in and going out. You don't want to breathe too quickly, just slow and steady. Breathe out (exhale) longer than you breathe in (inhale). Now focus on a favorite location or calming place. This might change from day to day, depending on your mood. Focus on details of the place, the sights and sounds and smells surrounding your favorite place. Continue to take slow breaths, inhaling for 2 seconds and exhaling for 4 seconds. One of my favorite places to visualize is the ocean. Depending on my mood, I might visualize a warm sunny day where I am laying on a blanket soaking up the sun rays on my muscles and watching the waves come in and out. Or I might visualize the ocean in the moonlight, the waves crashing down and glowing green with phospherous. Sometimes I will play ocean sounds in the background and light a scented candle. After a few minutes I know my blood pressure goes down and usually my pain level will subside some.

The key is to keep trying. It isn't necessarily easy at first, when I first started trying this I had a hard time and gave up on it for a few years. But then I decided to give it another try and after practicing a bit it got easier. I definitely see the benefits personally from it. So lets get visualizing!