Ways to Relieve Stress and/or Anxiety - Breathing Exercises


Breathing exercises
The next time you are relaxed just take a moment to notice how your body feels. Or have a think about how you breathe first thing in the morning or just before you fall asleep. Breathing exercise can help you relax because when you breathe deeply it sends a message to your brain to calm down and relax.

How to do Belly Breathing:

  1. Sit in a comfortable position.
  2. Put one hand on your belly just below your ribs and the other hand on your chest.
  3. Take a deep breath – in through your nose, and let your belly push your hand out. The hand on your chest should not move.
  4. Breathe out, through your lips as if you’re whistling. The hand on your belly should go in and be used to push the air out.
  5. Repeat this action between 3 to 10 times.

How to do 4-7-8 Breathing:

  1. Sit in a comfortable position or lie down.
  2. Put one hand on your belly and the other on your chest, as with the belly breathing.
  3. Take a deep breath slowly, from your belly, whilst counting silently to 4.
  4. How your breath, and count silently to 7.
  5. Breathe out, counting silently from 1 to 8.
  6. Repeat this action 3 to 7 times or until you feel calm.

Roll Breathing:

  1. Lie on your back with your knees bent.
  2. Put your left hand on your belly and your right hand on your chest
  3. Breathe in through your nose and breathe out through your mouth. Do this 8 to 10 times.
  4. Practice filling your lower lungs by breathing so that your left hand goes up when you inhale and your right hand remains still.
  5. When you have filled and emptied your lower lungs 8 to 10 times, add the second step to your breathing
  6. Inhale first into your lower lungs as before, and then continue inhaling into your upper chest. As you do so, your right hand will rise and your left hand will fall a little.
  7. As you exhale slowly though your mouth, make a quit whooshing sound.
  8. As you exhale, feel the tension leave your body as you become more and more relaxed.
  9. Practice breathing in and out in this way for 3 to 5 minutes.

Morning Breathing:

  1. From a standing position, bend forward from the waist with your knees slightly bent, letting your arms dangle close to the floor.
  2. As you inhale slowly and deeply, return to a standing position by rolling up slowing, lifting your head last.
  3. Hold your breath for just a few seconds in this standing position.
  4. Exhale slowly as you return to the original position, bending forward from the waist