Welcome, to this time of relaxation, and ease. This is a time of letting the day go – and moving into a slower pace – with less thought. A time to prepare yourself for deep sleep. You can start moving into that slower, more peaceful state of mind, with a long, slow, deep breath – there. Notice – that your breath may make you feel there’s more space. And all the time you need – to begin to ease into rest, and peaceful calm.
And to release whatever you need to – to invite sleep in. Taking another deep breath, and on the out breath – letting go of concerns. Of the day. Of any lingering thoughts. Because you have made the choice to give this time over to this beautiful place you’ve chosen – a gift to yourself of a space of time with no responsibilities. There’s nowhere else you need to be. Nothing else you need to be doing. You can just spend this time breathing … and relaxing. And moving into that still… gentle… peaceful state of mind that will lead you – into sleep and rest.
Letting your attention center on your breath – the gentle in and out of breath – and releasing whatever you like on the out breath. Feeling the physical sensation of tension flowing out of your body on the out breath. Flowing out of your body. Growing more and more relaxed – at ease – with every breath.
And enjoying that feeling – this reward, here at the end of the day. A way of balancing all the activity and business of the day – with the gentler, open space you feel when you bring your mind to your body, and your breath. And it’s interesting to know – that as you let go of thoughts and concerns, and move into sleep – your subconscious will continue to find solutions to issues in your life. Have you ever been working a puzzle before bed, and gone to sleep needing an answer, and when you woke, you realized you knew that answer? You subconscious is a powerful problem solver. It will work out your solutions as you sleep. The key is to relax completely, and let go of your focus on anything and everything – so let’s do that.
Relaxation: safe, relaxing place
And maybe you’re wondering just how that’s done – how to relax more than you ever have before. As you become aware of your thoughts – and sensations you’re feeling in your body. Of your arms becoming heavy – your muscles growing more loose and languid. And as you feel yourself begin to drift into that state of relaxation and calm, I wonder – if you can find yourself in the beautiful setting you’ve chosen , right now – find yourself there, your senses experiencing how relaxing and peaceful it is, there. As it is in your mind’s eye, your imagination – or maybe the ways this place is like a memory you have, of a place where you felt – absolutely calm. And safe.
A memory of water, with you finding yourself sitting on the bank of a creek, or at the seashore – listening to the movement of water. The endless variety of sounds water makes, flowing over stone, or sand. Or waves that lift and wash into the shore – one after the other. Or the sound of wind in trees on a cool autumn day – or the feel of the air as you stood on a mountaintop, where you may find yourself standing again – whatever setting called to you – just sinking into the experience of it. Letting your senses relax into the way this place welcomes you – the temperature, the movement of air … and the view opening up ahead of you, inviting you in, deeper –
And all the choices here are yours – so of course, I don’t know how you respond to this place. But I do know everyone has a place they can go to – here, in this place, or in your memory or your imagination – a place where they feel safe, and welcomed. A sanctuary. Invited to take your ease – your body comfortably heavy, and still – deep down inside – where you can be at absolute peace. As your body grows heavier – and your mind grows more still – and you grow more relaxed with every breath.
Like sand that you scoop up with your hand, opening your fingers so that the grains slowly, gently flow between your fingers. A gentle cascade of grains, falling … in a place without time, where your thoughts can flow down and away as easily as falling grains of sand – listening to the sounds in this place – and forgetting to even try to be aware – of whether your mind is more at peace than the stillness of your body – as you drift down – toward sleep – in your own time.
Anchor phrase: “Drifting down into sleep – like a leaf that surrenders its hold on the tree. Sleep”
Just floating in this gentle state of relaxation. A drifting, like leaves that fall from the tree, drifting on the air, and then gently settling on the surface of the stream, and the movement of the stream carrying them down, to find their way to the sea. Allowing yourself to surrender to that sense of gentle movement – and stillness. A space between waking and sleeping – and drifting from one, down into the other – and letting yourself know that you’ll fall into deep, restful sleep at just the right time – now, or later, or perhaps, at the end of this meditation. When you hear me say these words, at the end of this meditation: “Drifting down into sleep – like a leaf that surrenders its hold on the tree. Sleep” – when you hear me say those words, then, if you like and you haven’t already – you can become even more relaxed, and move gently into deep sleep, and dream.
Body of meditation: Escalator into sleep
And finding this natural setting, so relaxing. And the sense of moving down – the falling leaf, water that gently moves downstream, sand that falls between your fingers – bringing to mind the times in your day when you echo that movement, walking down a hill, or moving down a flight of stairs, or being carried down on an escalator –
And maybe you’ve had that feeling, moving on an escalator, down past the floors of a building, or a department store – moving down without any effort, just being carried down past the bustle of shoppers, and shopkeepers, all the rushed movement around you and apart from you, as you just stood still and let the escalator carry you down –
The times when the stores are so busy, and people are buying last minute gifts and carrying sacks of purchases along with them, and trying to manage babies and children – while you move past, glad, perhaps, that though they are rushed –you are not –
Moving from a busy, bustling floor, down to a floor that is more quiet – the luggage department, or the area where they sell books and people are standing, reading and considering what they want to buy – quieter here, more peaceful, but the escalator continues to carry you down, to a place more peaceful still – easy to breathe, as it moves you past the other people, and down –
And noticing there’s no one else on the escalator, not in front of you or behind. Not even on the other side. Just you, carried gently down to the next floor, where there is no one at all – just you – and where you can step off the escalator into an area with furniture, sofas and beds – and no one around but you – and because this is a dream, you can do whatever you want, so when you see the most perfect bed – one that’s exactly what you want to settle into, and be carried into sleep and dream – it’s easy to just languidly stroll over to it, and settle into the bed, letting your body sink into its support – the pillows under your head – and sensing you are completely alone, away from the bustle and the people – and if you want, you can wave your hand and dim the lights – though you are so relaxed, it may be easier to just think the lights dimmer, softer, with the stillness all around you and a sense of safety and calm – peace – a deep comfort that steals over you – so easy to surrender –
Affirmation: downloading stress as you sleep and dream
To rest, and sleep, and dream, the dream of this time and this resting, the dream you slip into as sleep washes over you, like a warm and gentle wave. Drifting, trusting the bed underneath you, or the wind holding you. So light and at ease. And as you move from dream to dream, just opening to your subconscious moving in your dreams, and making this change here – and that adjustment there – so tomorrow, in your waking life, you find that you have a new and easier way of moving through your day – your day without stress, your relationships easy and fulfilling – but that’s of no matter now, because now, there is nothing of concern – nothing that matters, in any way at all. Except this drifting that feels so right –
Anchor phrase to end: “Drifting down into sleep – like a leaf that surrenders its hold on the tree. Sleep”
Your body, your breath, your thoughts opening to the rhythm of deep sleep – and dream – the wonderful feeling of being carried just where you need to be, just where you need to go – needing to go nowhere at all. Perfect, just where you are now – perfectly relaxed, as you drift, held and gently moving downward – drifting down into sleep – like a leaf that surrenders its hold on the tree. Sleep
”As you let go of thoughts and concerns, and move into sleep – your subconscious will continue to find solutions to issues in your life.