Take a long, deep breath in. Let it all out now. You may already notice a difference in how you feel. Your breath is a tremendous tool for reducing tension and anxiety. Simple breathing exercises may make a tremendous impact if you include them into your daily routine.
If you are experiencing shortness of breath as a result of worry, there are best breathing exercises you may attempt to lessen symptoms and begin feeling better.
Let’s take a look at a few that you may undertake at any time during the day or include into longer moments for yourself.
1. Breathing in the abdomen
Breathing via your diaphragm (the muscle right underneath your lungs) can assist lessen the amount of work your body has to undertake to breathe.
To learn how to breathe through your diaphragm, do the following:
Lie down on the floor or bed with pillows beneath your head and legs for further comfort. Alternatively, sit in a comfy chair with your legs bent and your head, neck, and shoulders relaxed.
Then, place one hand behind your rib cage and the other over your heart.
Inhale and exhale through your nose, paying attention to whether or not your stomach and chest shift as you breathe.
Can you separate your breathing so that you can get more air into your lungs? What about the opposite?
2. Exhale slowly and deeply.
Deep breathing may not always be effective in relieving stress. Taking a deep breath in activates the sympathetic nervous system, which regulates the fight-or-flight response. Exhaling, on the other hand, is associated with the parasympathetic nervous system, which impacts our body’s capacity to relax and calm down.
Taking too many deep breaths too fast might induce hyperventilation. Hyperventilation reduces the quantity of oxygen-rich blood flowing to the brain.
When we are nervous or stressed, it is simpler to overbreathe and end up hyperventilating – even when we are attempting to do the opposite.
- Instead of taking a huge, deep breath, exhale thoroughly. Expel all the air from your lungs, then let your lungs do their job of breathing air.
- Next, try exhaling for a few seconds longer than you inhale. For instance, try breathing for four seconds and exhaling for six.
- Attempt this for two to five minutes.
This method may be performed in any posture that is convenient for you, such as standing, sitting, or lying down.
3. Breathing evenly
Equal breathing is another technique derived from the ancient practise of pranayama yoga. This indicates you’re breathing and exhaling for the same length of time.
You can practise equal breathing while sitting or lying down. Make careful to get comfortable in whichever position you select.
- For several breaths, close your eyes and focus on how you regularly breathe.
- Then, while you inhale through your nose, gently count 1-2-3-4.
- Exhale for another four seconds.
- Be aware of the sensations of fullness and emptiness in your lungs as you inhale and exhale.
Your second count may change as you continue to practise equal breathing. Make sure your inhale and exhale are the same length.
4. Concentrate on your breathing
Deep breathing that is concentrated and slow can assist relieve anxiety. This method can be performed while sitting or lying down in a calm, comfortable environment. Then:
Take note of how you feel when you inhale and exhale normally. Mentally scan your entire body. You may be experiencing stress in your body that you are unaware of.
- Breathe slowly and deeply through your nose.
- Take note of how your tummy and upper body are swelling.
- Exhale in whatever way seems most natural for you, sighing if necessary.
- Do this for several minutes, paying attention to your belly’s rise and fall.
- Choose a word to concentrate on and vocalise it during your exhalation. Words like “safe” and “quiet” can help.
- Consider your inhalation to be a soft wave rolling over you.
- Consider your exhale to be taking away negative and unhappy ideas and energies.
- When you become sidetracked, softly return your focus to your breath and words.
5. The lion’s breath
Exhaling strongly is required for lion’s breath. To experiment with lion’s breath:
- Get down on your knees, cross your ankles, and rest your bottom on your feet. Sit cross-legged if this position is uncomfortable.
- Bring your hands to your knees and stretch your arms and fingers.
- Inhale deeply through your nose.
- Allow yourself to vocalise “ha” as you exhale through your mouth.
- Exhale by opening your mouth as wide as you can and sticking your tongue out as far as it will go toward your chin.
- While exhaling, concentrate on the centre of your forehead (third eye) or the tip of your nose.
- As you inhale again, relax your face.
- Repeat the exercise six times, changing the cross each time.
6. Breathing in resonance
Resonant breathing, also known as coherent breathing, can help you relax and reduce anxiety. To put it into practise:
- Close your eyes and lie down.
- Breathe in slowly via your nose, mouth closed, for six seconds.
- Don’t overfill your lungs with air.
- Exhale for six seconds, allowing your breath to slowly and softly leave your body. Don’t push it.
- Continue for a total of 10 minutes.
- Spend a few more minutes being motionless and paying attention to how your body feels.
7. Meditation with a guide
Some individuals use guided meditation to reduce anxiety by stopping stress-inducing thought processes.
You can practise guided meditation by relaxing in a cool, dark, and comfortable location. Then, while relaxing your body and steadying your breathing, listen to calming tracks.
Guided meditation CDs assist you in picturing a calmer, less stressful world. It can also assist you in gaining control over intrusive thoughts that cause worry.
If you’re suffering from anxiety or panic attacks, try one or more of these breathing exercises to see if they help.
If your anxiety persists or worsens, consult your doctor to discuss your symptoms and potential remedies. You may reclaim your quality of life and control over your anxiety with the appropriate strategy.