Breathing Exercises

How Deep Breathing Can Help You To Ease Anxiety

  • April 27, 2022
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Anxiety is a common issue people face these days. 

Interview?…. Anxious!

Proposing the partner?…. Anxious!

First office presentation?…. Anxious!  

Sales pitch?…. Anxious!

We face anxiousness at all stages of life, it is quite normal. However, a not-so-good normal. In anxiousness, we often ruin things or the situation. Moreover, there are effects of anxiety on the body as well. You may feel dizzy, depressed, breathing problems, headaches, and/or panic attacks could be part of your anxious phase. Therefore, everyone should look for ways to overcome anxiety. On the same words, we have got some deep breathing exercises for anxiety which will not only combat anxiousness but also help in preventing it. 

Breathing Exercises For Anxiety 

First of all, let’s understand how deep breathing exercises could be helpful to relieve anxiety in general. Deep breathing works by encouraging the Parasympathetic Nervous System, which basically activates the natural bodily response that can be described as ‘rest and digest’. The out-breaths reduces your blood pressure, and dilate your pupils, which eventually lowers your emotional response and helps you to respond calmly.

Breathing Exercises

1) Simple Breathing Exercise

The basic exercise to start with, a simple breathing exercise that can be done anytime in the day. Also, it does not matter whether you are sitting, lying or standing, it is doable. 

How-To Instructions:

– Simply take a deep breath (inhale through your nose). Your abdomen should expand and your chest should rise a little. 

– Similarly, exhale gradually through your mouth. Purse your lips to do the same and keep your jaw relaxed. 

– Repeat it for a while until you start feeling relaxed. 

– Do it daily to prevent anxiety and other stress.  

2) 4-7-8 Breathing

This exercise is itself known as ‘relaxing breath’ to alleviate anxiety and other stress from your body. You can even do it by lying on the bed once become comfortable. In the beginning, try doing it with a straight back. 

How-To Instructions:

  • Keep your tongue tip against the tissue ridge behind your upper front teeth until you are performing this exercise. 
  • Exhale through your mouth only and inhale through your nose by counting until 4.
  • Now, hold your breath for a count of seven.
  • In the end, exhale completely through your mouth to a count of eight.
4-7-8 Breathing

3) Lion’s Breath

A self-explainer name, lion’s breath is another deep breathing exercise that helps to relax you from anxiety in the long run. All you need is to stick out your tongue and roar like a lion loudly. It relieves stress from the jaw and face. Also, it improves your mood and cardiovascular health as well.

How-To Instructions:

  • Spread your fingers widely
  • Inhale via your nose
  • Open your mouth widely, stick out your tongue and stretch it to the chin. 
  • Exhale carrying the breath across the root of your tongue.
  • Make ‘ha’ sound while exhaling. It should come from deep within your abdomen.
  • After doing it for once, breathe normally for a few moments. Then, do it seven times at the same intervals.

4) Resonance Breathing

This exercise relieves the stress from the entire body and gives you a relaxed mind. It helps reduce the chances of anxiety when a panic situation comes up.

How-To Instructions:

  • Lie down and close your eyes. Breathe into your nose for just 6 seconds. Do not fill your lungs with too much air.
  • Now, gently exhale for six seconds to let the air go out from the body slowly and gently.
  • Practice for 10 minutes every day.
Resonance Breathing

5) Belly Breathing

As per The American Institute of Stress, if a person takes out 20-30 minutes for belly breathing every day, it could help them reduce stress and anxiety

This exercise is again effective in all forms; whether you are sitting, standing or lying on your back. 

How-To Instructions:

  • Keep one hand on your upper chest, and another on your belly, below the ribcage.
  • Let your belly relax without forcing it inward by clenching or squeezing your muscles.
  • Breath in through your nose slowly. The inward of air should be felt through your nose or downward so that your stomach rises with your other hand and fall inward towards your spine.
  • Exhale through slightly pursed lips. Make sure your hand on your chest should be still.

6) Box Breathing 

Have you ever breathed with a rhythm of a familiar song? If yes, then this breathing exercise should feel quite known to you.

How-To Instructions:

  • Exhale to a count of four, then hold your lungs empty; again to a count of four.
  • Inhale to a count of four. Hold the air in your lungs until you count four.
  • Exhale and begin the new set.
Box Breathing 

The Final Words

If you feel anxious oftentimes, you must pay attention to your mental as well as physical health. Anxiety has both mental & physical side effects which could be harmful in a long run. Continuous anxiety can lead to depression as well. Fear and stress are the drivers of anxiety which could be alleviated with the help of breathing exercises. These anxiety-relieving exercises can do wonders in the short term as well as long term. Practice these deep breathing exercises for anxiety every day to manage your daily stress.