Breathing to help stress

At the current time, many of us may feel stressed, anxious and fearful and this is not surprising. We are all going through a period of time we have not been through before, filled with uncertainty, worry and change.

This time is also a great opportunity to reflect on what ‘really’ is important in life too.

Breathing techniques for relaxation

Simple breathing techniques can be used to help to calm both body and mind, giving us a bit of quiet, still time, to simply just ‘be’.

Why not start to practice breathing from your tummy and not from your upper chest.

The easiest way to do this is to sit, relaxed, in a quiet space with both feet on the floor. Place 1 hand on your chest and the other on your tummy. As you breathe you want to feel both tummy and chest move, not just your chest.

Practice breathing in through your nose, out through your mouth, whilst feeling the movement in these 2 areas. No need to count, simply just feel. You want to make sure you are really breathing into your tummy and not just lifting your ribs to get air in and out.

Another method to try is 6-6-6 breathing. This involves breathing in and breathing out through the nose, with the mouth closed. The idea is to breathe in to the count of 6, then out to the count of 6. Then in for 6 and out for 6. Ideally with a total of 5 of these sets in a minute, but just start with the counting in for 6 then out for 6.

A final method, which may assist you to sleep, is 4-7-8 breathing. With this we breathe in for the count of 4, hold for the count of 7 and then breathe out for the count of 8. Again this is in and out through the nose. Ideally do this type of breathing when you are going to bed, perhaps sitting in bed before sleep or lying down in bed.

Breathing is so important and never more so at this time. Try all of these methods and see how you go!

Broadwater Osteopathic Practice Worthing

At Broadwater Osteopathic Practice we offer a host of wellbeing treatments which can help patients with stress and anxiety. Find out more here.

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