Guided Imagery for Stress Relief

Modern science has proven there is a powerful mind-body connection. Studies have found 60 to 90 percent of all illness is stress related. Imagery is a vehicle to communicate and listen to what the body needs to heal. Imagery is like a dream, a story being told, where our imagination takes us exactly where we need to go for the opportunity to release stress and heal the body.

Imagery offers the body a chance to be in a relaxed state. When the body is at rest in a guided imagery, doctors have documented that the body’s blood pressure is lower. We begin to see our heart rate slow down. Each time we are in this state of relaxation, the immune system becomes strengthened. The relaxed state of imagery releases all the hormones and chemicals the body naturally produces for healing. It enhances the body’s natural process to repair and heal. Just in the 15-20 minutes of imagery, the body begins to strengthen and healing is accelerated. It has been found that the body cannot heal in chaos. The body naturally heals in a calm and relaxed state.

The body continually gives us messages and signals to help us maintain and balance our health. We sometimes just need to get out of our own way. The book by Louise Hay, You can Heal Your Life, is a wonderful guide for symptoms as metaphors.

Anyone can use guided imagery. It is important to make a sacred space and find relaxing music that you enjoy.

There are three parts to an imagery: induction, body and return. The inductions is 5-7 minutes of calming and soothing. You can use the colors of the chakras, white light, or a place of peace to relax. The ocean, a meadow or forest are common places to go. Herbert Benson’s relaxation response is also a wonderful way to begin imagery. This technique uses progressive muscle relaxation to place the body in an alpha state for relaxation and healing. We can also use sacred breathwork to place us in a state of relaxation to prepare us for our journey.

The body of an imagery can address letting go of stress, such as picturing all the day’s stress floating away in a balloon, or washing out to sea. It can be as simple as using a magic solution to wash away all the tension and stress. And the return simply begins to bring body, mind and spirit back to the room, back to the present moment.



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