Deep Breathing 4 – 2 – 6
We usually tend to breathe from the upper part of our lungs – you’ll know if you’re doing this if your chest goes out when you take a deep breath.
We should breathe from our lower lungs – you’ll know if you’re doing this if your stomach goes out when you take a deep breath. I call this Belly Breathing.
When we’re under stress, we tend to breathe fast and shallow. The complete opposite of what we should do. Deep, slow breathing gives our body time to absorb the oxygen and get rid of toxins.
Breathing for Relaxation:
- Sit in a comfortable position.
- Close your eyes (this changes brain waves from beta to alpha)
- Take a big breath in through your nose. Make sure it comes from deep in your belly (your stomach should go out)
- Bring it all the way up to your chest for a count of 4
- Hold it for a count of 2
- Slowly release the breath through your mouth for a count of 6
Practice deep breathing periodically throughout your day. Make this a part of your everyday life.
Then when you are starting to feel stressed or you know you are going to be experiencing a stressful event soon, you can start doing this to actually calm yourself down. Deep breathing for stress relief works best if you start it when your stress level is just beginning to rise. If you’re already having an anxiety attack, it may help, but it will be limited.