Progressive Relaxation for Self-Hypnosis

Elvis Elvis


The reason it’s called progressive relaxation for self-hypnosis is that you relax your body as you progress through it’s parts. Makes sense.

So begin at the top of your head and slowly name the parts in succession. And as you do, physically let that part loosen. You should be able to actually feel the difference. Take your time and wait until the muscles of that part have really let go before going on to the next part.

Be Specific

Be as specific as you need to be. Some people are able to relax all the muscles that are included when they say “relax head”, while others know that they need to say “relax scalp, relax eyebrows, relax eyelids…” naming every individual part.

If you are just beginning to use this method, you will probably want to name the smaller parts. Once you become more adept (with practice), then go to the more general terms.

It is, of course, acceptable to begin at your feet and work up. You can actually start anywhere as long as you don’t forget some parts!

Beginners may wish to do a quick scan of their body after finishing to make sure that tension has not crept back in. Some important places to check:

  • eyes,
  • mouth,
  • shoulders,
  • and hands

Progressive Relaxation for Self Hypnosis

The Old Standby

Progressive relaxation works well for many people and is probably the most used of all of the self-hypnotic techniques.

However, if you normally have a hard time relaxing, you may want to try a different way, for now. Or… use it in conjunction with another method. In this case it would be used as a deepener.

Once you have tried it, you will realize that it’s the most you’ve relaxed in a long, long time.


The more you practice and try the different methods of going into self-hypnosis, the more you will find that you respond most effectively to a particular one. Then stick with that one and remember, two to three minutes is all that is required twice a day to reach your goal.

Got Kids?

Progressive relaxation is an great way to get your kids into the “sleep mode”. It works especially well for those children who have trouble settling down at bedtime.

Tell them that it’s a game that you can play together. (That will get their attention!) Then tuck them in and start naming body parts. “Relax your feet. Relax your ankles. Relax your knees…”, all the way up to their forehead and scalp.

For some reason kids seem to love it and it really does work to get them to calm down and get ready for sleep.

You can add a visualization now, also. Take them somewhere that they enjoy (like the beach) or somewhere that they would like to go (like the stars). It doesn’t have to be poetic, just make up some interesting comments about the things they would see and do in that scene.

I guarantee, you are making memories that they will recall with fondness in their adult lives.