Mindfulness Meditation with Dr. Vallis (Military Meditation Coach Podcast)

Mindfulness Meditation with Dr. Vallis (Military Meditation Coach Podcast)


[Music]
[Dr. Julie Kinn] Welcome back to the “Military Meditation Coach,” a podcast for meditation,
mindfulness, and relaxation exercises. Made for the military, but good for everyone. I’m Dr. Julie Kinn with the Defense Health
Agency and today I am pleased to introduce Dr. Anyan Vallis who is going to lead us in
a mindful meditation. Before we get started, let me remind you that
the “Military Meditation Coach” is produced by the Naval Center for Combat and Operational
Stress Control and by the Defense Health Agency. Get in touch with us on Facebook and Twitter
@MilitaryHealth, or please reach out to us by email. Our address is in the show notes. Thanks to those of you who have subscribed
and rated us wherever you get your podcasts. The views expressed here are those of the
presenters and do not reflect the official policy of the Department of Defense or the
United States government. Now, onto Dr. Vallis. [Dr. Anyan Vallis] Before we get started,
just take a minute to get comfortable in your chair. You can also lie down if that feels comfortable. I’m going to ask you to place both feet flat
on the floor uncrossed. And then put each hand either on a lap or
on the armrest. You don’t want to cross your hands or fingers. And then I’m going to ask you to find something
to stare at that isn’t moving. So just find a nice, steady focal point. And then you want to start breathing in and
out of your belly. So take a minute to get comfortable with breathing
in and out of your belly. So if you notice your shoulders rising, you
want to kind of keep those down and put the breath into your belly. And while you’re doing that, you want to see
if you can match the inhale to the exhale. You want to match the count for the inhalation
to the count of the exhalation. And you want to go to your comfort level. [Vallis] You might want to breathe in to the
count of three. And then you breathe out to the count of three. You might want to breathe in for the count
of four. And then you breathe out for the count of
four. So the final step is for you to set an intention,
and that’s just why you’re here. Why are you giving yourself this time? Do you want to settle your thoughts? Maybe calm your mind, or just maybe spend
a little quality time with yourself. And you’re going to set that attention towards
your breathing, and I’m going to ask you to move your awareness around various body parts. And each time you let your attention fall
on a body part, you’re just noticing sensations. You’re not judging it as the bad arm or the
bad knee. You’re just going to notice the sensations
without judgment. Make sure your breathing is even. [Vallis] And with your next inhalation, you’re
going to move your attention all the way to the bottom of the right foot. Just breathing and noticing. Noticing what you find. And let your next inhalation move to the top
of the right foot. Notice if you can feel a shoe if you’re wearing
one or a sock if you’re wearing one. And let your next inhalation move you to that
right ankle. Just circle your attention around that right
ankle. Noticing what’s there without judgment. And let your next inhalation move your awareness
from that right ankle all the way up that right shin. Noticing what you find. If you feel fabric against your shin or airflow. And let your next inhalation move your attention
from the right ankle up the back of that lower leg. Notice the calf muscles all the way up to
the back of the knee. Just noticing sensation. [Vallis] And let your next inhalation move
you around that right knee. Top of the knee, sides of the knee, back of
the knee. Just breathing and noticing. With your next inhalation, you’re going to
move your awareness back down to the bottom of the left foot. Notice what sensations are there. And let your next inhalation take you to the
top of the left foot. And with your next inhalation, you’re going
to circle your attention around that left ankle noticing the sides, the back, and the
front. Just breathing and noticing. And let your next inhalation carry you up
that left shin. Just breathing and noticing what you find. [Vallis] With your next inhalation you want
to move from the left ankle up the back of the lower leg, looking around your calf muscle
noticing sensation. Just breathing without judgment. And with your next inhalation, move around
that left knee, circling your attention around that left knee. Noticing what you find, not judging. And let your next inhalation move you up the
right thigh from the knee of the right thigh to your right hip. Just noticing that large group of muscles
so important for walking. And let the next inhalation move you up the
back of the upper part of the right leg. The hamstrings all the way up to the buttocks
on the right side. Just noticing and breathing. And let your next inhalation move you back
over to the left thigh, and the knee all the way up to the hip. Noticing sensation. Breathing here. [Vallis] And let the next inhalation move
you in that back part of the left upper leg. Back of the knee, notice the hamstrings up
to the left buttocks. Just noticing what you find here. Breathing and noticing. Let the next inhalation move you to the belly. Just noticing the rising and the falling of
your belly. Just breathe air in and out. And let the next inhalation circle around
your belly and your waist to that low back. Just noticing what you find in your low back
area. And let your next inhalation move you slowly
up your spine, up to the middle back, to the shoulders and the back, to the upper back. Noticing, breathing. [Vallis] Let your next inhalation take you
to both shoulders, the right and the left. And just looking around both shoulders noticing
what you find, keeping your breath even. And
let your next inhalation take you down the right arm from the shoulder to the elbow,
from the elbow to the wrist. Circle your attention around that right wrist. Noticing and breathing. And let your next inhalation move you to that
right hand. The top of the hand and the fingers. And let your next inhalation move you to the
palm of the right hand. And notice if the palm feels different from
the top of the hand. Breathing and noticing. [Vallis] And let your next inhalation move
you back up to the left shoulder, looking around for sensations. Next inhalation will take you down the left
arm from the shoulder to the elbow. From the elbow to the wrist. Circle your attention around the wrist. Noticing and breathing. And with your next inhalation, move your awareness
over the top of the left hand down each of the fingers. Breathing and noticing. And let your next inhalation move you to the
palm of the left hand. And just noticing here. And let your next inhalation move you up to
the middle of your chest to your heart region. And notice if you can feel your heart beating. That muscle is so important for blood flow. [Vallis] Then you’re going to move your attention
from there on your next inhalation up to your neck area. Notice the front of the neck, and the sides
of the neck, and the back of the neck. Breathing and noticing. And let your next inhalation take you to that
jaw. Just breathing and noticing if it’s tight. If you can loosen it. And notice what your tongue is doing. If you can release it from the roof of your
mouth so that it relaxes. And let your next inhalation take you to your
cheeks. And then your next inhalation will take you
up to your eyes on both sides. Just noticing how your eyes feel. And the small muscles around your eyes. And your eyebrows. And the area next to your eyes. [Vallis] And let your next inhalation move
you to your forehead, noticing what you find here. Is it furrowed? Is it tense? Just noticing if it’s smooth and relaxed. And let your next inhalation move you to the
top of your head. Just breathing and noticing. Noticing airflow. Noticing hair. Noticing tightness or warmth or tingling. And let your next inhalation move you over
to the sides of your head to your right ear and your left ear. Notice what you find in each ear. And then move your attention down the back
of your head. To the bottom of your skull and see what you
notice there. [Vallis] And finally, with your next inhalation
you’re going to scan from the top of your body all the way down to your feet. Just noticing and breathing. And noticing what you find as you scan from
top to bottom. [Vallis] And your next inhalation you’re going
to move your awareness back to your heart. Notice the feeling of deep appreciation for
giving yourself this time. Thinking of someone that might benefit from
you giving yourself this time. Allowing that appreciation to just spread
throughout your body. Just breathing and noticing. Noticing
and breathing. [Vallis] And on your next inhalation, you’re
going to take a nice, deep breath into your belly. Let that out with a sigh. Take another deep breath into your belly. As you exhale, you’re going to start to wiggle
toes and fingers. Take one more deep breath here and let it
out, and maybe wiggle your shoulders and your fingers and your toes and your legs. And let your final deep breath here end in
an exhale where you open your eyes and you move around and you come back to the room. And you notice any differences, any changes. Allow your breathing to go back to normal. And show yourself some gratitude for taking
your time in this body scan.

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