Close your eyes. Take a few slow, deep breaths in through your nose, exhaling through slightly parted lips. As you begin to relax, let your breathing become just a little deeper and a little slower without straining in any way.
Now tighten the muscles of your left arm and hand, clenching your fist, hold for a few seconds, feel the tension. Tighten the muscles of your right arm and hand, clenching your fist. Hold for a few seconds, feel the tension. Release, letting your arm and hand go limp. Feel the relaxation. Tell yourself: my arms and hands are heavy and warm.
For the next few minutes, each time you tense a muscle group, feel the tension. Each time you release, take a few seconds to feel the relaxation.
Tighten the muscles of your left leg and foot, curling the toes. Release, letting your leg and foot go limp. Tighten the muscles of your right leg and foot, curling the toes. Release letting your leg and foot go limp. Tell yourself: my legs and feet are heavy and warm.
Squeeze your buttocks together tightly. Release.
Draw up the muscles of your pelvic floor (as if you were trying to hold back from urinating). Release
Tighten your abdominal muscles, drawing in your belly as if you were trying to touch your backbone with your abdominal wall. Release. Feel your abdomen relax completely.
Observe your breathing, calm and regular. Tell yourself, my uterus and pelvic organs are warm, comfortable and relaxed.
Arch your back slightly. Release, letting the muscles of your back sink into the surface on which you are lying.
Tighten your shoulders by pushing them back as if you were trying to make your shoulder blades touch. Release, letting your shoulders fall limp.
Tighten the muscles of your neck by arching the neck slightly as if you were trying to look up. Release, letting your neck go limp. Now say, The muscles of my back and neck are warm and relaxed.
Clench your teeth together, tightening the muscles of your jaw. Release. Tell yourself: my jaw muscles are loose and relaxed.
Squint your eyes. Release, letting the eyelids fall heavy and tell yourself, my eyelids are heavy and relaxed. Furrow your brow as if you were worried about something. Release, letting the space between the eyes feel as if it were getting wider. With the next breath out - say: my forehead is cool.
Now, take a few deep breaths, letting your breathing become a little slower, a little deeper than usual, without straining in any way. Let your awareness travel though your entire body from head to toe, releasing any additional tension you may find on the out-breath.
Tell yourself: Because I am relaxed, I can labor and give birth better.