by Dr. Carol Renaud Gaffney
In guided imagery you allow your mind
to transport you to a time and a place of your
choosing — a place where you can be safe
and quiet. The experience is unique for each individual
even though the instructions are the same. As
you give yourself a personal place, you provide
yourself with a respite from the frantic day.
In guided imagery, as with meditation,
you can choose the length of time that you would
like the experience.
Allow yourself to stay in the visualization for
as long as you would like. You will finish when
you are ready. You will feel refreshed and alert
when you are done.
When you are physically comfortable begin to
breathe deeply and completely. With each
breath out you become more relaxed
both physically and mentally. You let the chair
or sofa or bed support your body. You become aware
of the points of contact between you and your
support. You become more and more relaxed
as tension and stress leave your body with each
outbreath. Each time you are aware of sounds in
the environment, the sounds take you to a deeper
state of relaxation.
Let your mind drift to a place that is safe for
you. This may be a place that you know about,
a place where you have been. This may be a place
that exists only in your mind. Whichever it is,
you find that it is the right place for you to
be right now. While here you allow yourself to
know this place very well. You look
around and become aware of your surroundings.
You look ahead of you and become aware
of any objects and their shapes, the colors, the
brightness or darkness. You turn slowly and become
more aware of what is here, whether you are alone
or with company. You become aware of the
experience. You know that you are safe. As you
look around, you are aware of anything that you
want to change. You add or change whatever you
would like. This place is just for you, a place
of acceptance and love.
Listen carefully and know your place through
Allow yourself to touch anything you want
to touch. Know your place through touch.
Allow yourself to move freely in your place.
No one but you knows what you are doing. You can
sit, stand, run, jump, or fly if you would like.
You are completely free with no criticism and
Breathe deeply and as you do, become aware
of your breath and any aromas that fill this space.
Know your place through its smell.
Become aware of your feelings. Know yourself
by how you feel while you are here.
Become aware of the experience of safeness
and of the pleasure you experience while you are
here. Allow yourself the enjoyment
of being here. Stay here for as long as you would
like, exploring, resting.
When you are ready to return to your day, count
slowly backwards from five to one, increasing
your awareness and movement with each number.
When you reach "one" your eyes will
open and you will be refreshed and alert.