You summed it up really well. That’s exactly the way to do it. You cycle through the sensations. Each cycle deepens your “state” and you may observe increased calmness and sensations. If one sensation becomes pronounced you should focus on increasing it, like what we typically do in WILD. Otherwise, just finish the cycles and go to sleep – in this case, the cycles pretty much serves the purpose as mantras, except more effective (we all know that communicating to our subconscious via “spoken language” isn’t particularly very effective). In addition, the repeated cycling also tends to create “inertia” which carries into your dreams – similar to how FILD works.
Sometimes we experience sensations but not vivid enough. You can try focusing on it for a few seconds to see if you can increase it. If it stays the same then you should move on to the next steps. Don’t do it for more than a few seconds.
What you said about relaxation is very true. Through my observation it is a major hurdle for many people, experienced LDers included. In fact, most of the time relaxation techniques tend to put the user into the wrong mind/body state. With SILD we don’t need relaxation. Just give your body 4 to 5 hours of sleep and you should be well prepped. Let’s face it – there is no better and easier way to relax than simply to fall asleep, isn’t it?
I hope you find this technique useful. Don’t hesitate to ask any questions.