Learn to relax and reduce stress just by breathing deeply
Take a deep breath...
I'm not a doctor or yogi, but I have been using deep breathing to relax and de-stress for years. It works for me, so I thought I'd share my technique with others. It's easy to do, requires no special equipment, and takes just a few minutes!
Picture a relaxing scene and breathe
Three easy steps to relaxation through breathing
this is how I do it
Close your eyes and breathe out. Ready?
1. Breathe in deeply. Do it slowly and deliberately, moving your diaphragm downward and letting the air expand your belly. When your lungs feel full up to your shoulders, see if you can move your diaphragm down a little more, and you will find there is extra space to be filled as you let your abdominal muscles relax, and your belly expands outward. I like to breathe in through my nose while I count to 8 in my head.
2. Hold your breath in for another count of 8. Do it comfortably and don't scrunch up your face or balloon out your cheeks. Just feel yourself relaxing as your body eases. You should feel comfortable, and not breathless or gaspy at all.
3. Exhale slowly for a count of 4-5. Try breathing out through your mouth. Do it quietly, not explosively. Nice and easy, like a slow leak.
That's it! Don't you feel better now? Try it again, and repeat as needed throughout the day.
Good times to use deep breathing
I have used this breathing technique several times each day for years. Here are some situations where it has helped me to relax and feel calm.
1. Working at a desk, in front of the computer.
2. Trying to fall asleep at night, lying down in bed.
3. During pregnancy.
4. During labor.
5. When getting blood tests or injections (I get extremely anxious and stressed around needles).
6. When upset or angry.
7. In stop and go traffic. Be sure to keep your eyes open if you do this while driving!
8. Before public speaking assignments.
9. During turbulence on an airplane.
10. Any time my shoulders or muscles feel tight.
Why I use deep breathing to relax...
Breathing is free, easy, effective, and you can do it anywhere, anytime. I've used the breathe--hold--exhale technique for years, to help quell anxiety and everyday stress. If you're looking for a natural way to calm down and feel better, give these breathing techniques a try.
Additional resources online
There are many applications for deep abdominal breathing, and you can do it anywhere. Read more about relaxation and breathing techniques at these sites.
- RELAXATION TECHNIQUES
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- Breathing exercises for relaxation - Revolution Health
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- KIN 370 Stress Management - Breathing Relaxation Technique
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- Relaxation Response and Abdominal Breathing
The Relaxation Response is the opposite of the Stress Response and is essential in counteracting the problematic stress in your life.
- Deep Breathing, Progressive Muscular Relaxation & The Relaxation ...
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- Relaxation Techniques for Migraines and Headaches
Continue breathing, but each time you inhale, imagine that you are breathing in more relaxation. Each time you exhale imagine that you are getting rid of a ...
- Deep Breathing Exercises
Deep breathing is important from the standpoint of both health and spiritual development. Deep breathing increases our vitality and promotes relaxation. ...
- Breathing Techniques that Help Reduce Stress
Relaxation breathing can relieve these symptoms. These methods can also be used to calm yourself before you go to sleep. This way you get more of a better ...
Get more information on relaxation techniques from Amazon
Here are some tools you can use to help you learn to relax. Quiet music and a comfortable environment are helpful.
Do you have a story or tip related to breathing for relaxation? Please share it here!