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Power of Breathing

Breathe, take a nice deep breathe.  Fill your lungs with oxygen and let it out.

Allow yourself to receive the breathe.

Breathing is a simple act that can really help us to connect back to ourselves and the present.  Breathing can help us to ground ourselves.

When we are anxious/stressed our breathing shifts and instead of coming from the lower lungs area we breathe fast from the upper part of our lungs.  But you can alter it and change it by doing diaphragmatic breathing which I outlined below. 

Deep Diaphragmatic Breathing When you first learn the diaphragmatic breathing technique, it may be easier for you to follow the instructions lying down. Start off lying on your back on a flat surface on a bed or on the floor with your knees bent and your head supported. You can use a pillow under your knees to support your legs. Place one hand on your upper chest and the other just below your rib cage. This will allow you to feel your diaphragm move as you breathe. Breathe in slowly through your nose so that your stomach moves out against your hand. The hand on your chest should remain as still as possible. Tighten your stomach muscles and take a long, slow breath in through your nose, first filling your lower lungs, then your upper lungs. Hold your breath to the count of three. Exhale slowly through pursed lips, while you relax the muscles in your face, jaw, shoulders, and stomach. The hand on your upper chest must remain as still as possible. As you gain more practice, you can try the diaphragmatic breathing technique while sitting in a chair, as shown below.

To perform this exercise while sitting in a chair:

Sit comfortably, with your knees bent and your shoulders, head and neck relaxed. Place one hand on your upper chest and the other just below your rib cage. This will allow you to feel your diaphragm move as you breathe. Breathe in slowly through your nose so that your stomach moves out against your hand.

The hand on your chest should remain as still as possible. Tighten your stomach muscles, letting them fall inward as you exhale through pursed lips. The hand on your upper chest must remain as still as possible.

I suggest practicing this breathing technique daily. By practicing it you will become familiar with the process and will be ready to use it any time you begin to feel anxiety or panic building.  You can use it you want to let go of tension and begin to experience a sense of calmness. *Information above is based from the Cleveland Clinic and you can find more information from their website. clevelandclinic.org.




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