Breathing Techniques to help with Anxiety and Stress
“To control the breathing is to control the mind. With different patterns of breathing, you can fall in love; you can hate someone, you can feel whole spectrum of feelings just by changing your breathing”. – Marina Abramovic
Breathing is something we don’t often think about, it is something we just do and perhaps take for granted, even though oxygen is the most important factor in keeping our body alive. There are many benefits to breathing with mindfulness, it can help to provide us with increased energy levels but also improve our mental focus and clarity, all essential components in our fast-paced world.
Learning to breath mindfully is an uncomplicated, straightforward way to focus our mind, helping us to feel more relaxed and calmer, reducing feelings of anxiety, stress and depression.
Below are some simple breathing techniques for you to try:
4 Count Breathing
• Breathe in for a count of 4
• Hold your breath for a count of 4
• Breathe out for a count of 4
• And pause for a count of 4
• Imagine you are standing on a beach looking out to sea at the waves
• As you inhale, imagine you are drawing a wave towards you up the sand
• As you exhale, imagine the water retreating back into the sea
• Imagine a balloon is inside your tummy
• As you breathe in, the balloon expands and your tummy rises
• As you breathe out, the balloon deflates and your tummy fall
• As you breathe in deeply, you breathe in calm
• As you exhale out deeply, you breathe out tension
• Repeat silently to yourself as you breath in and out.
You are the expert on you, so you know your body better than anyone else, please be sure to use caution when undertaking any breathing exercise. If you start to feel dizzy or unwell whilst performing breathing exercises, please stop.