5 Yoga Poses For Back Pain

5 Yoga Poses For Back Pain

Somedays are hard, psychically. You ache all over but the worst is your lower back. Your looking for anything that will dull or eliminate the pain.

I love yoga, with the right sequence of poses relief is achivable without taking all those medicines. I myself try to yoga my way out of my day. I have a morning, bedtime, stress relief, and a lower back pain routine. I love sharing my yoga experiences and poses that may help you too. If you suffer from lower back pain from an injury, desk job, or fatigued muscles give this routine a try.

Why muscles get sore?
When muscles are required to work harder than they’re used to, or in a different way, it is believed to cause microscopic damage to the muscle fibres, resulting in muscle soreness or stiffness.

Causes of lower back pain:
Sitting too long
Bone Spurs
Pinched Nerve
Lifting heavy objects
Muscle spasms

Yoga Poses:
Remember to breathe in deep through the nose while doing these poses for maximum relief.

Reclining hand to toe pose

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Benefits:
Relieves backache, sciatica, and menstrual discomfort
Therapeutic for high blood pressure, flat feet, and infertility
How To:
1. Lie supine on the floor, legs strongly extended. If your head doesn’t rest comfortably on the floor, support it on a folded blanket. Exhale, bend the left knee, and draw the thigh into your torso. Hug the thigh to your belly. Press the front of the right thigh heavily to the floor, and push actively through the right heel.
2. Loop a strap around the arch of the left foot and hold the strap in both hands. Inhale and straighten the knee, pressing the left heel up toward the ceiling. Walk your hands up the strap until the elbows are fully extended. Broaden the shoulder blades across your back. Keeping the hands as high on the strap as possible, press the shoulder blades lightly into the floor. Widen the collarbones away from the sternum.
3. Extend up first through the back of the left heel, and once the back of the leg between the heel and sitting bone is fully lengthened, lift through the ball of the big toe. Begin with the raised leg perpendicular to the floor. Release the head of the thigh bone more deeply into the pelvis and, as you do, draw the foot a little closer to your head, increasing the stretch on the back of the leg.
4. You can stay here in this stretch, or turn the leg outward from the hip joint, so the knee and toes look to the left. Pinning the top of the right thigh to the floor, exhale and swing the left leg out to the left and hold it a few inches off the floor. Continue rotating the leg. As you feel the outer thigh move away from the left side of the torso, try to bring the left foot in line with the left shoulder joint. Inhale to bring the leg back to vertical. Lighten your grip on the strap as you do, so that you challenge the muscles of the inner thigh and hip to do the work.
5. Hold the vertical position of the leg anywhere from 1 to 3 minutes, and the side position for an equal length of time. Once you have returned to vertical release the strap, hold the leg in place for 30 seconds or so, then slowly release as you exhale. Repeat on the right for the same length of time.

Bridge Pose:

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Benefits:
Stretches the chest, neck, and spine
Reduces anxiety, fatigue, backache, headache, and insomnia
How To:
1. Lie supine on the floor, and if necessary, place a thickly folded blanket under your shoulders to protect your neck. Bend your knees and set your feet on the floor, heels as close to the sitting bones as possible.
2. Exhale and, pressing your inner feet and arms actively into the floor, push your tailbone upward toward the pubis, firming (but not hardening) the buttocks, and lift the buttocks off the floor. Keep your thighs and inner feet parallel. Clasp the hands below your pelvis and extend through the arms to help you stay on the tops of your shoulders.
3. Lift your buttocks until the thighs are about parallel to the floor. Keep your knees directly over the heels, but push them forward, away from the hips, and lengthen the tailbone toward the backs of the knees. Lift the pubis toward the navel.
4. Lift your chin slightly away from the sternum and, firming the shoulder blades against your back, press the top of the sternum toward the chin. Firm the outer arms, broaden the shoulder blades, and try to lift the space between them at the base of the neck (where it’s resting on the blanket) up into the torso.
5. Stay in the pose anywhere from 30 seconds to 1 minute. Release with an exhalation, rolling the spine slowly down onto the floor.

Downward Facing Dog

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Benefits:
Relieves headache, insomnia, back pain, and fatigue
Therapeutic for high blood pressure, asthma, flat feet, sciatica, sinusitis
How To:
1. Come onto the floor on your hands and knees. Set your knees directly below your hips and your hands slightly forward of your shoulders. Spread your palms, index fingers parallel or slightly turned out, and turn your toes under.
2. Exhale and lift your knees away from the floor. At first keep the knees slightly bent and the heels lifted away from the floor. Lengthen your tailbone away from the back of your pelvis and press it lightly toward the pubis. Against this resistance, lift the sitting bones toward the ceiling, and from your inner ankles draw the inner legs up into the groins.
3. Then with an exhalation, push your top thighs back and stretch your heels onto or down toward the floor. Straighten your knees but be sure not to lock them. Firm the outer thighs and roll the upper thighs inward slightly. Narrow the front of the pelvis.
4. Firm the outer arms and press the bases of the index fingers actively into the floor. From these two points lift along your inner arms from the wrists to the tops of the shoulders. Firm your shoulder blades against your back, then widen them and draw them toward the tailbone. Keep the head between the upper arms; don’t let it hang.
5. Stay in this pose anywhere from 1 to 3 minutes

Extended puppy pose

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Benefits:
Stretches the spine and shoulders
How To:
1. Come onto all fours. See that your shoulders are above your wrists and your hips are above your knees. Walk your hands forward a few inches and curl your toes under.
2. As you exhale, move your buttocks halfway back toward your heels. Keep your arms active; don’t let your elbows touch the ground.
3. Drop your forehead to the floor or to a blanket and let your neck relax. Keep a slight curve in your lower back. To feel a nice long stretch in your spine, press the hands down and stretch through the arms while pulling your hips back toward your heels.
4. Breathe into your back, feeling the spine lengthen in both directions. Hold for 30 seconds to a minute, then release your buttocks down onto your heels.

Cat pose

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image source

Benefits:

Stretches the back torso and neck
Provides a gentle massage to the spine and belly organs
How To:
1. Start on your hands and knees in a “tabletop” position. Make sure your knees are set directly below your hips and your wrists, elbows and shoulders are in line and perpendicular to the floor. Center your head in a neutral position, eyes looking at the floor.
2. As you exhale, round your spine toward the ceiling, making sure to keep your shoulders and knees in position. Release your head toward the floor, but don’t force your chin to your chest.
3. Inhale, coming back to neutral “tabletop” position on your hands and knees.

**I’m not a yoga instructor just a lover of yoga. Dont over do each pose and if you are feeling pain of any kind, please stop and contact your doctor if you wish to continue.**

 

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Stress Management Techniques for Family Get-Togethers

Stress Management Techniques for Family Get-Togethers

The holidays are all about spending time with your family and friends. That’s why it’s such a special time, right? Well, let’s be honest; that’s also why it’s such a difficult time. Stress rates spike, family altercations increase, and you somehow find yourself in tears after what should have been a lovely dinner.

Stress Management Techniques for Family Get-Togethers #stress #family #anxiety #together

Much as we love them, family can be difficult. Whether your family is the type to get into out-and-out arguments, or whether the stress is usually a result of subtle barbs and hurt feelings, we can all use a little extra help with stress management over the holiday season. Here are some tips to help you keep your cool:

Deep Breathing
It might seem really basic, but it’s a classic because it works. When we’re stressed, our sympathetic nervous system goes into overdrive and forces us into a reactive state, where we might act in ways we regret later. It can even become a self-perpetuating cycle, where you become vigilant for any perceived threat and it just continues to feed the stress. Instead, cut off your stress reaction by reassuring your body that it’s not in physical danger. How? Give it oxygen. Regulated, relaxed oxygen. Whenever you find yourself reacting to the stress, start to measure four counts as you inhale, four as you exhale.

Communicate Boundaries
If setting boundaries feels like a mean-spirited thing to do, consider sociologist Brene Brown’s advice that the MOST compassionate people are those with clear boundaries. Setting clear boundaries with our loved ones allows you to stop stressing about how much you need to take before just snapping. It also lets you have more peaceful relationships because others know where you stand, instead of being surprised that you’re reacting so negatively to something they say. It’s especially great for those arguments that you keep having over and over again. This post has fantastic advice for setting and communicating boundaries with loved ones in a way that will avoid conflict instead of creating it.
Stress Management Techniques For Family Get-Togethers

Check Your Self-Talk
Usually we’re quite sensitive to things that our families say because there’s actually more behind every statement. We hate when our sister brags about how great her children are doing in school because we feel self-conscious about our own performance as a parent, or we react badly to our father’s advice because we feel he’s never been satisfied with us, even back when we played little league. Instead of reading into each comment, check your own self-talk. Write it down and follow each lead down to the extreme conclusion so that you can decide whether or not it’s logical. Then, when that harmful self-talk creeps in again, you can nip it in the bud.

Take a Walk
Did you know that walks outside–especially walks in green spaces–have a powerful effect on our cognition? It gets us outside of our own heads, puts our body chemistry into a healthier balance, and redirects self-deprecating thoughts. So include a nice walk around the neighborhood into your family get-together, whether it’s with a few other family members, or just by yourself. If you want some time alone, you can always say that you have to take a call and step outside.
Stress Management Techniques For Family Get-Togethers

Have an Exit Strategy
By hour 4 of family socializing, stresses and conflict can compound. Evenings that seem to go on and on can wear on us, and yet slipping away might not feel like an option if you have a mother who has perfected guilt-tactics (and let’s face it, all of our mothers know how to guilt us). So, go into the evening with a plan and an excuse to leave. Tell yourself you’re heading out at a certain hour, and a reason why. For example, you might have to get the kids to bed, you might need to get to sleep for an early morning appointment the next day, or you might even have to leave a daytime party before it gets full dark because you don’t want to drive icy roads at night when your vision is compromised. Let your mother try to argue with the safety excuse!

How to Stop Comparing Yourself to Others

How to Stop Comparing Yourself to Others

When I was 8, all I wanted for Christmas was a Rollerblade Barbie. And when I found her sitting next to my stocking on Christmas morning, I was thrilled. I felt like it was the perfect day, and contentedly played with my Barbie until later that afternoon. I went to my friends’ house and we compared notes on our Christmas hauls. She had gotten a Rollerblade Barbie too. She’d also gotten her own roller blades, and sparkling pink knee pads, not to mention Roller Barbie’s boyfriend Ken and a pack of Barbie dresses.

And suddenly my Christmas wish come true… felt a lot less magical.

We learn from a young age to compare ourselves to others. It’s not always harmful. Often, it’s our greatest motivator to grow and develop. But unchecked, comparison can also undermine joy and wallop our emotional wellbeing.

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Comparison Drives Social Dynamics on Every Level

The complicated problems of social comparison come early in evolution. A landmark study at Emory University gauged capuchin monkeys’ reaction to unfair treatment by feeding them different treats. When the staple food was cucumber across the board, all of the monkeys were content with their share. However, as soon as some lucky monkeys started getting nice, sweet grapes, the remaining subjects (who were able to view the discrepancy) started to despise their cucumbers, even tossing them back into the researchers’ faces.

Mark Twain said that comparison is the death of joy. It’s easy to see real-world illustrations of this, far beyond the behavior of children and monkeys. It’s one of the major tensions of the workforce, of political conflict, of family relationships. Over and over again, science has verified this correlation: grateful people are happy. Envious people are unhappy. But how can we make ourselves be those happy grateful people instead of the green-eyed grumps?

Modern America Is The Perfect Environment for Comparison

Our modern media-saturated world makes comparison more inevitable than ever. In fact, we can pick our poison for vicarious living and quickly watch our own lives pale in comparison. Feeling good about your financial status? Watch Keeping Up with the Kardashians and kiss your satisfaction over your nest egg goodbye. Looking for love? Watch The Bachelorette and see one girl choose between a dozen handsome suitors. All it takes is a few minutes of television for us to kickstart envy’s vindictive reign over our emotions.

It gets even more alarming when it’s not just Hollywood that’s putting our lives to shame. Real people on Instagram are always doing life better than you. Their kids are better dressed, their meals are more beautiful, and they’re traveling to more exotic and exciting locales than you’ve ever experienced in your life.

Here in America, one of the richest nations in the world, in a time when our quality of life puts royal luxury of the Tudor era to shame… we feel cheated.

Scarcity Culture

Researcher Brene Brown points out an interesting thing that exacerbates the problem of social comparison. She calls it scarcity culture. Although we have more leisure time, more health, and more opportunities for growth and wealth than any other period of time, we never feel like it’s enough.

“For me, and for many of us, our first waking thought of the day is ‘I didn’t get enough sleep.’ The next one is ‘I don’t have enough time.’ … We spend most of the hours and the days of our lives hearing, explaining, complaining, or worrying about what we don’t have enough of. We don’t have enough exercise. We don’t have enough work. We don’t have enough profits. We don’t have enough power. We don’t have enough wilderness. We don’t have enough weekends. Of course, we don’t have enough money – ever.”

This scarcity culture makes comparison especially scary because we believe that each of these resources that we don’t have “enough” of has a fixed value. If someone else has it, then we have less of it available to us. If they have more money, then we have less. If he has more dating prospects, then he’s taking mine. If her children are perfect, mine are less so.

How to Stop Comparing Yourself to Others #life #personality #unique #inspiration #inspire

 

Practical Tips for Avoiding the Social Comparison Trap

In a way, comparison is a necessary ingredient of being part of a society. It pushes us to succeed. But it can also be the pitchfork at our backs spurring us into anxiety, and depression.

So, next time you find yourself scrolling through your newsfeed and feeling woefully inadequate when compared with your acquaintances who have perfect careers, marriages, and kids, remember this:

1. Every person is such a complex and unique mix of memories and attributes and factors, we can never get a direct comparison. You are too unique to stand side by side with someone else and find that you are similar in all things, except for this one specific thing wherein you fall short. It’s never true. You have your own set of unique strengths and weaknesses. For everything that you envy in others, there’s something of yours that they wish they had.
2. You’re comparing your weaknesses to others’ strengths.
3. You’re judging off of inaccurate information. Reality shows are not reality. And those glossy photos on Instagram are not telling the whole story.

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Here are some helpful tips to curtail comparison in your own life:

  • Be patient with your own imperfections. We’re all works in progress.
  • Love genuinely so that you can rejoice in others’ accomplishments.
  • Practice gratitude. Do small things that remind you of your own assets and blessings.
  • Watch the words of your internal dialogue. They affect us more than we realize. Be wary of anything that includes “I should” or “better than me.” As this article states, the words we say and think have a powerful mental effect – either making us feel stuck where we are, or empowering us to move forward. This is also something our children learn from us, so guard your words.
  • Stop looking. If it’s killing you to see that perfect Insta feed, shut it out of your life.
  • Compare with yourself instead of with others. The only person you should compare yourself to is who you were yesterday.
  • Serve others. In most religions, we’re taught that the only reason that we have good things is because they’re given by God. We’re also taught that the purpose for those good things is so that we can help others. Whether or not you’re religious, it’s a smart principle. Practice gratitude for your gifts by sharing them. It will help you realize how much you have.
  • Be kind to other people. It’s a habit. Being more compassionate towards others can help you learn to be more compassionate towards yourself. We often think that it’s the opposite, but it’s not true. Soon, you should be able to be your own friend. What would you tell a beloved sister in the exact same situation as you? You’d probably be much more encouraging to her than you are to yourself.

77639CFA-AEAE-4930-A5AD-301AF79389FAChristine is a professional writer and an avid reader who’s passionate about storytelling in any form. At any given moment, she’s in the middle of at least three books on anything from psychology to ninjas. Although she’s a marathon swimmer and enjoys camping in the mountains, she believes there’s nothing better than a carton of ice cream and a Dawson’s Creek marathon. She blogs about marketing here. Follow more of her writing on Twitter @readwritechill.

 

 

A Peek Inside My Purse

A Peek Inside My Purse

*This post contains affiliate links, i get a small percentage of commission (at no extra cost to you) if you make a purchase from the link, thank you for supporting Leslie Nichole.*

I think it maybe because i am nosey but i love reading “in my bag” posts a lot of bloggers do. I always laugh at myself because what i carry is way different than 95% of those kind of posts I’ve read. Hah, it would be great to be “normal”.

I get amazed at the makeup that beauty bloggers keep. I can’t do makeup, i had a twin brother growing up so i didn’t have anyone to practice on, give me tips, or help me pick from infinite shades of eyeshadow pots.

The fashion bloggers have some of the freshest handbags that make me do my “wanty hands” (it’s like a child shaking their hands when they want something). I only own two Coach bags which i am proud of myself, as they were the first two purchases made with my freelance profit. I don’t use them everyday though.

 

Every day is different, not just because it is a new day but also because i have chronic migraine. Which pretty much means i have more days with a migraine than not.

I carry a huge purse on the daily so i can toss in anything i might need for convenience. I get frustrated when i forget something or misplace it all together.

Take a look inside my purse as someone who suffers anxiety & migraines.

• Wallet (essentials inside, credit cards, $17 in cash, drivers license)
• Planner (it contains my life)
• Hand sanitizer
• Migraine meds x3
• Chapstick x2
• Phone charger
• Sunglasses
• Small wheat bag
• Emergency contacts
• Crystals (Rose Quartz, Amethyst, Green Aventurine, Rhondinite, Agate, Lepidolite, Chalcopyrite)
• Aveeno travel size lotion

You are probably thinking “what is wrong with this girl?”. I have a condition called chronic migraine, which basically means i have more headache days a month than not.

Some migraines only last a few hours, I’ve had a few that have lasted days. I was nauseous, i couldn’t open my eyes because of the light (it is really odd sleeping in sunglasses too), i could hear neighbors 8 houses down cutting grass like it was in my backyard at my window.

This condition makes workdays (with 2 part time jobs out of home and a freelance business in home, everyday is a workday – 7 days a week now) almost impossible, uncomfortable, and down right unbearable. Imagine how hard it is to concentrate with a throbbing on one side of your head along with the symptoms above. Bills must be paid so i have to power through.

On the sever days i take so many prescription and over the counter meds (Excedrin Migraine) my head feels hazy and i wade through the fog all day. It feels like when you wake up but your not ready to but ya have to adult that day, yeah it’s like that.

Some migraines only last a few hours while others last days. I have a list of triggers i keep in my head of what may cause tgem so i can try to stay away from, these triggers range from foods, smells, even to situations.

5 Things To Know About Anxiety

5 Things To Know About Anxiety

I have had anxiety since i can remember i just never knew what it was and i couldn’t explain it without someone telling me it was all in my head or just for someone to tell me to get over it (as if it’s as easy as that). I’ve talked to my doctor who has prescribed medications to help me deal with my daily life. I take that medication but i also help manage my anxiety naturally as well with Valerian Root, St. John’s Wart, & Cherry Plum drops.

There usually isn’t just one thing that can place you in the throws of a panic attack, it can happen at any time really.

When you feel the storm rolling in you’ll notice your heart rate speeds drasticly, which causes you to feel dizzy or faint sometimes even weak, sweating, my muscles tense up, chest pains, numbing of the fingers, difficulty breathing or taking in breaths, also the lose of control is persistent.

When an attack occurs i want to be left alone to deal with the mess that is going on in my head. Sometimes i don’t know how i will make it through one that seems like it is going on forever when in reality is only a couple of minutes. Once it’s usually over i have tears streaming down my face while i gasp for air.

Anxiety is a tricky monster that can not just be waved away. #anxiety #depression #lifestyle

What is anxiety?
Anxiety is a mental health disorder characterized by feelings of worry, anxiety, or fear that are strong enough to interrupt with one’s daily life.

 

5 Things People Living With Anxiety Want You To Know:
1. Anxiety disorders are not just worrying, it can be debilitating and disabling condition.
2. Anxiety suffers don’t like to worry, but that is how this illness keeps us as prisoners in our own bodies.
3. People with anxiety disorders are not antisocial. Given the way our body reacts to anxiety we try not to put ourselves in a situation that can bring on an attack.
4. We are still a work in progress, which may feel to us like a never ending process.
5. Our anxiety disorder isn’t who we are, it isn’t our personality. We shouldn’t be defined by the borders we’ve set for ourselves to help keep our anxiety at bay.

Bedtime Yoga Routine

Bedtime Yoga Routine

It’s no secret that I love yoga! It does great things for your mind and muscles. I tend to do a daily yoga bedtime routine.

I experimented with different poses until I found my optimum destressers (is that a word? I don’t think it’s a word). To each is their own but I’ve told a few friends about my nightly bedtime routine and they’ve tried it and said they sleep like babies (some of them very loud bear like babies).

The stretching of worked muscles and ease of a tired mind come together like a harmony of well, great things. If you find some of these poses are a little too much then cut back the stretch or cut it out all together. You’ll also want a quality yoga mat to prevent injury as well.

The idea is to relax enough to fall asleep and rest your mind enough to stay asleep. You’ll wake up refreshed too (that’s your body’s way of thanking you)!

Down Dog

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The preparatory position is with the hands and knees on the floor, hands under the shoulders, fingers spread wide, knees under the hips and typically about seven inches (17 cm) apart, with the spine straightened and relaxed.

On a deep exhale, the hips are pushed toward the ceiling, the body forming an inverted V-shape. The back is straight with the front ribs tucked in. The legs are straight with the heels reaching to the floor.

The hands are open like starfish, keeping the forefinger and thumb pressing down on the floor/mat. The arms are straight, with the inner elbows turning towards the ceiling.

If one has the tendency to hyper extend elbows, keeping a microbend to the elbows prevents taking the weight in the joints. Turning the elbows up towards the ceiling will engage the triceps and build strength. The shoulders are wide and relaxed.

Line up the ears with the inner arms which keeps the neck lengthened.

The hands are shoulder width apart and feet remain hip-width apart. If the hamstrings are very strong or tight, the knees are bent to allow the spine to lengthen fully. The navel is drawn in towards the spine, keeping the core engaged.

The hips move up and back. Focus is on the breath while holding the asana, with deep, steady inhalation and exhalation creating a flow of energy through the body. On an exhale, the practitioner releases onto the hands and knees and rests.

Childs Pose

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In this asana, the body faces the floor in a fetal position. The knees and hips are bent with the shins on the floor.
The chest can rest either on the knees or the knees can be spread to about the width of a yoga mat, allowing the chest to go between the knees.

The head is stretched forward towards the ground – the forehead may touch the ground.

The arms may be stretched forward in front of the head or backwards towards the feet.

Cat Cow Pose

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Begin with your hands and knees on the floor. Make sure your knees are under your hips, and your wrists are under your shoulders.

Begin in a neutral spine position, with your back flat and your abs engaged. Take a big deep inhale.

On the exhale, round your spine up towards the ceiling, and imagine you’re pulling your belly button up towards your spine, really engaging your abs.

Tuck your chin towards your chest, and let your neck release. This is your cat-like shape.

On your inhale, arch your back, let your belly relax and go loose. Lift your head and tailbone up towards the sky — without putting any unnecessary pressure on your neck.

This is the Cow portion of the pose. Do this for several breaths.

Seated Spinal Twist Pose

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Begin seated on your mat with your legs extended in front of you.

Bend your right knee and place your right heel as close to your right sit-bone as you can.

Then bend your left knee and cross your left foot over your right knee. Plant it on the floor so your left ankle is next to your right knee.

Reach your left arm behind you and place your palm on the floor. Then bend your right elbow and cross it over the outer side of your left knee.

Keep your elbow bent, or if you can, hold onto your left toes. Keep your left hand on the floor for stability, or bring your left arm around your lower back. Reach for your shirt, or if you can, hook your fingers on the top of your right thigh.

Gaze behind you and over your left shoulder.

Continue pressing your right arm into your left knee, and use each inhale to lengthen the spine and each exhale to rotate further to the left.

Do this for at least 6 breathes.

Corpse Pose


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Lie flat on your back, preferably without any props or cushions. Use small pillow below your neck if absolutely required.

Close your eyes.

Keep your legs comfortable apart and let your feet and knees relax completely, toes facing to the sides.

Place your arms alongside, yet a little spread apart from your body. Leave your palms open, facing upward.

Taking your attention to different body parts one by one, slowly relax your entire body.

Begin with bringing your awareness to the right foot, move on to the right knee (as you complete one leg, move your attention on to the other leg), and so on, and slowly move upwards to your head, relaxing each part of the body.
Keep breathing slowly, gently, deeply and allow your breath to relax you more and more. The incoming breath energizes the body while the outgoing breath brings relaxation.

Drop all sense of hurry or urgency or any need to attend to anything else. Just be with the body and the breath. Surrender the whole body to the floor and let go.

After some time, about 10-20 minutes you should feel fully relaxed.