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​Chanting to Relieve Acute Stress

An effective technique to help reduce the response to an acute stress is to say a brief, relaxing chant to yourself. The chant can be a phrase or just a few words, such as “I am a good person,” “All will be well,” or “I will be OK.”

How to Chant

After deciding on the words:

  1. Pick a tune. Set your words to a simple tune — one that you find pleasant or has a religious feeling to it — such as the tune of a Gregorian chant.
  2. Chant. First, chant your phrase quietly several times. Then, chant without making any sound. Try to feel calm, relaxed, and comfortable.
  3. Practice. For several days, practice saying your chant quietly to yourself while being in a relaxed state. We want your mind to associate the chant with a relaxed feeling.
  4. Relax. When you experience an acute stress, chant silently to yourself. Notice how this relaxes and calms you, allowing you to focus.

At different times, you may decide to take a few deep breaths or go to your funny relaxer. Use whatever works best to calm yourself.

Contact Us

For more information about UPMC's Healthy Lifestyle Program

  • Call 800-533-UPMC (8762)
  • E-mail Dr. Bruce Rabin,
    Director, Healthy Lifestyle Program
    hlp@upmc.edu