Saturday, December 13, 2008

Relaxing body and soul

Just before your date begins, I want you to try the following relaxation technique to make sure your body and mind are in a relaxed state. Later, as a sort of “booster shot” during your date, I want you to periodically do a relaxation “spot check.” (It’s okay to go to the restroom to relax.) You may want to scribble a few of these steps on a piece of paper to tuck into your pocket or purse.
  1. Check your breathing. Look down. Is your stomach expanding with every breath? If not, stop worrying about your waistline and breathe deeply.
  2. Relax your shoulders. Do they look more like earrings than shoulders? Lower those babies! While you’re at it, gently swivel your neck in a figure eight.
  3. Look at your hands. If you have fingernail marks in the palms of your hands, you’re a little too tense. Lay your hands flat on your knees (you can do this under the table, and no one will be the wiser) and stretch your fingers and your palms.
  4. Check your face. Particularly if you’ve been smiling non-stop, your face can freeze into an uptight mask. Open your eyes and mouth as wide as you can. Hold. Release. Note: Don’t try this at the table in the restaurant or in the front row of the play. After your date is underway, excuse yourself to the privacy of the restroom stall.
  5. Check your mind. After your date is in full swing, ask yourself whether you are “scoring” the evening. You know, one point for you when your date laughs at a joke, one point for your date each time his or her fingertips brush your arm. If so, cut it out! Bring your mind back to the present moment, stop overseeing the project, and, hey, enjoy yourself!

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