3 Easy Breathing Techniques to Ease Stress and Anxiety

Diaphragmatic Breathing

This breathing technique is a great way to relieve some stress before taking an exam, heading into a meeting or any other stressful event. Diaphragmatic breathing helps adjust your posture and calm your nervous system, often helping to lower your heart rate and blood pressure immediately.

How it’s done:

  1. Sit in a comfortable position or lie on a comfortable, flat surface.
  2. Relax your shoulders.
  3. Place one hand on your chest and the other on your stomach.
  4. Take a deep breath in through your nose for about two seconds. Air will move through your nostrils into your abdomen, making your stomach expand.
  5. Purse your lips and slowly exhale through your mouth for about two seconds.
  6. Repeat six times, or more as needed.

Sama Vritti or Equal Breathing

This breathing technique helps calm the nervous system, reduce stress, and increase focus. It is a great way to unwind before bed.

How it’s done:

  1. Sit in a cross-legged position. When that isn’t possible, lie on your back or sit on a chair.
  2. Close your eyes and slowly inhale through your nose for a count of 4 then exhale for a count of 4.
  3. Repeat for several minutes.

Box Breathing

This relaxation technique aims to return breathing to its normal rhythm or “reset the breath.” It is specially grounding when you are feeling overwhelmed, defeated, or need a confidence boost.

How it’s done:

  1. Sit upright and slowly exhale through your mouth.
  2. Inhale slowly through your nose for a count of four.
  3. Hold your breath for a count of four.
  4. Exhale again through your mouth for a count of four.
  5. Repeat these steps, progressing up to a count of six.

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