Learning to calm yourself, and to deeply relax your mind, brain, and body is an essential skill if you are to learn to worry well.
Physical relaxation is important for many reasons. When we are responding to worry, the brain and body are preparing for action, and using up nutrients at a high rate to stay alert. When we relax, our brains and bodies automatically repair, refresh, and renew themselves, replenishing depleted nutrients and strengthening our ability to cope.
Next, mental relaxation breaks the bad habit of automatically focusing on scary or worrisome thoughts, and teaches you to shift your focus to calming, soothing, and comforting thoughts.
Third, deep relaxation allows you to view a familiar situation from a different perspective that may reveal new possibilities.
Fourth, learning to relax relieves feelings of helplessness because you’ll find that there is almost always something you can do, at least internally, about almost any situation.
Finally, learning to relax puts you in a state of calm awareness in which you are more open to receiving helpful information and wisdom from parts of your brain that may be difficult to reach when you are busily engaged with the outside world. Learning to relax is fundamental to mastering the more complex skills I will teach you later.