Thumb to finger relaxation

10/07/2016 - By Dr. Catherine O'Leary

The ability to relax can be very helpful, especially when you have a chronic illness like psoriasis. If you suffer with pain then learning to relax is even more important. Pain leads to tension which can lead to more pain, more tension on and on in a vicious cycle.

Relaxation can help with the tension and stop pain from getting worse. It’s a skill like any other and requires lots of practice. It’s important to practice at times when you aren’t tense as well as using it as a strategy to cope at more difficult times. The more you do it, the more effective it will be.

There are many different ways to relax.

This is one method I love. You can use it when you are tense or irritable, when your pain is getting worse and before bed to help you get a good night’s sleep.

Thumb to Finger Relaxation Get comfortable and remove distractions like the television and your mobile.

Touch your thumb to your index/pointer finger.  Keep it there and think about a time when you felt physically tired in a healthy way, for example after exercise or a strenuous activity. Imagine you have just swum several lengths or jogged some distance. Spend a minute or so remembering that feeling of ‘healthy fatigue’.

Touch your thumb to your middle finger and as you do, remember a time when you felt loved and loving. It could be a warm hug or embrace or a touching conversation. Spend a couple of minutes remembering that feeling.

Touch your thumb to your ring finger and as you do remember the nicest compliment anyone paid you. What did they say? Try to accept that compliment now. Truly believe it and pay the person who gave it to you the respect of accepting it whole-heartedly. Remember that feeling for a minute or so.

Touch your thumb to your little finger and as you do remember the most beautiful place you’ve ever been. Visualise it in your mind. Remember the scent and noise, the ambiance and the temperature. Enjoy this image for a minute or two.

That’s it.

You can do this exercise anywhere and it only takes around 10 minutes.

If you enjoyed that, why not try a mindful minute.