Relax and Put Things Into Perspective

It was time...  I was avoiding this very event my entire day.  I knew that I was about to face unwanted pain and suffering.  My palms and forehead begin to sweat.  I feel the butterflies floating in my stomach.

I look for a way out. I look for a way to avoid the event. Anything… but no, I can’t delay it any longer.  I can’t make any more excuses for delaying the inevitable.

I run into the building in a frenzy, my procrastination and avoidance mechanism has caused me to be late for the appointment.  I run up the stairs, panting… I hate to be late and I hate to be sweaty.

I walk into the room while trying to catch my breath.  Somberly, I am led to the backroom.  I sit down and look outside the window.  I see kids playing in the park, lovers walking hand in hand going for a leisurely stroll.  Now I really don’t want to be here.  I feel trapped like I am in a prison with no way out.

The procedure begins…

I am trying to relax, but it is hard because my pain sensors are flaring. Mentally, I am doing everything I can to avoid calling for mercy.  I hear sounds of machinery at work and 80’s slow rock music fill the room.  This truly is torture.

All of a sudden, I hear an inner voice calling my name.  “James, relax…hang in there.”  My instincts take over and I go into relaxation mode. 

Phase 1.  Breathe in…..breathe out… slowly... go even slower… breathe in for four seconds… hold my breath for another 4 seconds… breathe out for 8 seconds… It is working, my anxiety begins to drop and my pulse begins to lower. Breathe even slower…ignore the pain… just focus on breathing. 

Phase 2.  I feel myself relaxing my feet, my calves, my quads, my abdominal, my hands, my arms, my neck, my head, my jaw…… Fully focus on relaxing every part of my body.  I can’t seem to relax my hands so I tense them up as hard as I can for 2 seconds and let go, now I can start to feel my hands begin to relaxing. 

Phase 3.  I need to change my perception of the event.  Focus on the benefits. The pain will subside and the benefits after will be tremendous. Focus on being grateful for having this opportunity to be where I am today.  Many people around the world will never have this opportunity. Focus on the friendly face on front of me, displaying mastery in her craft.

Time’s up.

I get up from the chair and say thank you to the friendly face standing in front of me with the biggest smile I could conjure up.

I walk out of the room, realizing how ridiculous it was to get all worked up before the event.  After all, it was just another trip to the dentist.


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