Reduce Stress in 10-20 Minutes a Day*

John R. Fishbein Ph.D. is here to help you develop a relaxation response rather than a stress response. From anxiety treatment to sleep tips; he has plenty of ways to help you reduce stress. In San Jose, locals know he’s the go-to guy for effective counseling that can be implemented into daily life. For example, here are a few things you can try now.

1. Pick a focus word, short phrase, or peaceful scene. You could start with the word “one.”

2. Sit quietly in a comfortable position.

3. Close your eyes and focus on your breathing for a few moments. Allow it to become slower, deeper, and more rhythmic. Notice your abdomen expand as you inhale and contract as you exhale. This lets you inhale more oxygen and exhale more carbon dioxide, promoting relaxation and energy.

4. Continue this for 2-3 minutes. The deeper and longer the breath, the better.

5. As you exhale, concentrate on the word, short phrase, or peaceful scene. This is not easy, but don’t worry about how well you are doing. When other thoughts come to mind, simply say, “Oh well,” and re-focus. You’ll learn to relax and better manage your mind. There’s no need to do this when inhaling, only exhaling. Continue for 10-20 minutes.

6. Practice once or twice daily. Good times are before breakfast and dinner and/or when you are stressed.

*For additional information, see the book, “The Relaxation Response,” by Herbert Benson, M.D.