Be calm now
You can use your peripheral vision to feel calm in this moment - no need to wait!
Stare hard at something in front of you.
Notice the sharpness and clarity of your vision.
Notice what happens to the muscles in your face and body.
They become tense – ready for activity and great for flight or flight.
Still focusing on a point right in front of you, let your eyes and face soften and relax.
Let your gaze start to spread out, wider and wider.
Noticing what you can see out the corners of your eyes and up and down, just by softening your gaze.
No need to move your eyes.
Maybe add a gentle smile.
What's that like?
Just stay in that moment, being the observer of your mind and your body.
You can now keep your eyes open or close them.
You may notice you start to relax, your breathing slows, your thoughts slow, and you feel calmer.
Now try different times to use your peripheral vision.
You may like to notice where you use foveal vision in your day, and see whether having a wider, peripheral vision would be OK.
Do you glare at the computer screen, with your face screwed up and frowning?
What about in the car – do you stare ahead, with your shoulders tense and uptight?
What about when you get up to make a cup of coffee?
At night, engage your peripheral vision and close your eyes and imagine waves of pure relaxation and peace washing over you.
On the train or bus, you can disengage from a stressful boring commute, by engaging your peripheral vision and becoming calm.
Say to yourself “I am calm.”
Peripheral vision engages the parasympathetic nervous system. Foveal vision engages the sympathetic nervous system.
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