I have many problems in my life, but my lips don’t know that. They always smile.”
– Charles Chaplin
Throughout my years, I have learned many techniques that incorporate relaxation as the most important first step on that all other methods are based upon.
May it be Meditation, Contemplation, Visualization, Silva Mind Control, Psycho-Cybernetics, Hypnosis, Self-Hypnosis, Progressive Muscle Relaxation, Autogenic Training, or you name it.
Relaxation Is The Crucial Element Of Them All.
They all have complete relaxation of the body and mind either as their final destination or at least as an important first step. However, for most people relaxation itself is often difficult to achieve, or it takes quite some time to get into that state. Time that could and should be better used by either enjoying that elusive state of total relaxation or doing what you aimed to do when you entered your Meditation, Contemplation, etc.
Looking for a quick way to change my state
All the time I used different ways to get myself into a relaxed state, which is the first step for meditation or contemplation. And it is also an awesome way to feel, so I was constantly looking out for new ways to achieve this state of relaxed happiness faster and easier. And wouldn’t it be great if this state could be triggered so fast that it could be triggered anytime – so that I don’t need to close my eyes, get into a meditative pose or whatever.
Physiology and State Change
I knew that the fastest way to change my state is to change my physiology. And although it is said that radical changes in the physiology work best, I noticed that is not necessarily so. Subtle changes in some key areas can have a dramatic impact on your state.
For me, I noticed that I only need to change the muscles around my mouth and my eyes – i.e. the smile-muscles – to change massively. It is well-known in Psychology that smiling affects your body, your health, your relationships, etc. – see this article from Psychology Today.
It is not about the physiology – it is about re-membering
However, it took a while for me to realize that it is not about the change in my physiology that affects my state – it is about the associated memories. I noticed that I could get the same instant effect in my body back without moving the smile muscles. I only needed to visualize a smile within me (To be fair it is hard not to move your smile muscles once you start imagining an inner smile).
This brought me to believe that there is an inner memory in your body. Your body remembers how it feels to feel good. We don’t need to learn it anew. All we need is to re-member (no, I wrote this on purpose with a hyphen), to make this memory a member of our current reality again.
I do believe that the body has a memory of its own. I know that there are controversial debates about the hypothesis of body or even cellular memory (if you are interested you may start at the Wikipedia article), which I am not getting into.
Your mind and your body are linked. Any change in the one reflects in the other. If you change your mind by remembering something that triggers any emotion within you, your body will react to that. And also if you change anything in your body that is anchored to a certain emotional state, your mind will follow and produce that state within you.
We love to smile together
We also love to communicate through smiling. Have you ever been smiled at and noticed that no matter how grumpy your mood was you smiled back, and it changed your day?
And if I start to smile at other people, I see that smiling spread around pretty fast – it gets contagious.
But why only do it occasionally throughout the day? Why only do it when other people are around?
You are a universe – so smile with your best friends
Realize that you are never lonely – your body consists of trillions of cells – all part of you but also separate entities. Shouldn’t these be your closest friends? Isn’t the universe within universes that you call your body and your being a multitude of entities sharing a common reality in the here and now?
What could be better than to smile with all these beings that form the existence that you call „I“ in the here and now?
The recipe to achieve happiness and bliss in seconds
So, without further ado, here is the recipe I use to get myself into a happy and relaxed state within seconds. This is also the starting point for any meditation for me. After you tried this a few times, it doesn’t matter if you close your eyes or keep them open, if you sit, stand or walk, if you are alone or within a large crowd. You can do it all the time once you formed a trigger.
- Put a little smile on your face, not a big grin just a little smile in the corner of your mouth and your eyes.
- Move that smile inside. I put that smile at the back of my head.
- Let that smile spread throughout your body. I FEEL that smiling wash through my body like a wave.
- Notice all cells of your body are smiling back at you. Again FEEL this. Yes, you could also imagine it like a picture, but the most important part is to get the feeling.
- If you like you can extend the feeling of that smile beyond the physical borders of your body as far as you like.
If you do this 2 or 3 times, then you start to build a trigger. That means every time you do this, you will get the resulting state of happiness, relaxation and bliss faster and more intense. Nowadays, I only have to imagine a little smile at the back of my head to let that wave roll through my body.
And I noticed that this is all I need to get into a relaxed Alpha-wave state. The more you practice the easier it gets to re-wire your brain. Make this frequency the dominant and retrain your body by remembering how good it feels to smile to yourself.
Do this little exercise several times a day. Make it a habit. It could become the most important habit of your life.