Progressive Muscle Relaxation

With the festivities of Christmas & New Year behind us, we are well and truly settling into January and all that 2023 has to offer.

I always find this time of the year a little underwhelming, the lights are put away, there’s no holidays on the horizon and the weather is dark and miserable. January often leaves me feeling quite low, what about you?

Traditional Chinese Medicine asserts that we are in the water element, which is the winter season. In our 5-element theory, this is the most yin time of the year and we are encouraged to embrace this through contemplation, stillness, rest and relaxation. By taking the time to restore our energy levels during the winter season we will be well-rested and prepared for the explosion of yang that comes with spring and the wood element.

After the hype of Christmas and the running around that comes with New Year, we can often feel a bit all over the place when we get to January. Then we are ‘encouraged’ to create resolutions and plans for the coming 12 months. None of this needs to happen right now – in fact, this is a great time to pause, get some perspective and take your time.

I don’t tend to make resolutions, instead I take some time to assess what I need more or less of in my life at any given point. Right now, I need a bit of movement, some fresh air, meditation and lots of relaxation. For me, relaxation comes in many forms but the one I like the most is Progressive Muscle Relaxation. This takes me on a journey through my body, encouraging me to observe what it feels like to be tense and then relaxed in each area. By practicing PMR regularly I have noticed where I hold tension and can tune into loosening this off throughout my day – which makes for lots of mini-relaxation breaks.

If you’d like to try Progressive Muscle Relaxation, then check out my new video which will guide you through the practice. All you need is to find somewhere you can sit quietly for 10-minutes or so and get cosy. I am planning in a PMR session after work each day in January to help give me something to look forward to, and to give me a chance to switch off from the workday.