You are wanting some effective tools to help keep anxiety and stress at the minimum. However there is so much information out there it’s hard to know where to start.
I get it, so I have given you my 3 favourite breathing techniques that kick anxiety in the butt.
When faced with stressful situations, our breathing shifts and we automatically begin quick, shallow breathing. If you are relaxing in the bath, listening or reading, your breathing is slow, deep, calm and inhaled and exhaled through our diaphragm and abdomen.
Exhaling is linked to the parasympathetic nervous system, which influences our body’s ability to relax and calm down. On the flip side, the sympathetic nervous system, which controls the fight-or-flight response (the one we are trying to calm down) can be triggered by a deep inhale, as it’s our bodies natural response to threat…this is NOT what we are aiming for.
Breathe easy babe. Using our breath to calm our body is straightforward. There are so many different breathing techniques and it’s a matter of finding what feel easy and natural for you. The following are my go to tools when I need to calm the f*** down.
3 Breathing Exercises
Square Breathing: Inhale for 4 counts, pause for 4 counts, exhale for 4, pause for 4. You can visualise a square, following it with your breath, or trace it with your finger.
Balloon Breathing: Visualise a balloon in your belly. As you breath in, your balloon expands. As you exhale, your balloon gets smaller. Breath deep into your belly as you inhale. I also have my fingertips touching on my belly. As my balloon expands my fingers move apart, as I exhale they move to touch again.
3/6 Breathing: This supports the longer exhale. Breathe in for 3 counts and out for 6. Doubling the exhale helps to kick your parasynthetic nervous system into gear, calming you down and helping you to think clearly.
Having these tools on hand was a game changer for me and I hope they are for you too.
Which one of these resonates with you most? Comment below.
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