Best Breathing Practices to Relieve Stress and Anxiety

Anxiety is a term which is very commonly used all over the world. Amidst the busy schedules, anxiety and stress are the two factors that keep us frozen yet push us forward. When your daily routine gets overwhelming, it is always recommended to take a pause, let things sink in, and calm yourself completely. Trust me, the worst you can do to yourself is ignore your anxiety and “keep moving forward”.

First of all, let’s discuss some traits that an anxious person can show:

When you have anxiety, you find doing even little things, pretty tough. For instance, getting up from your bed seems like an impossible task in the morning and you feel like something in your heart is weighing you down. Don’t worry; it’s not something that only you are going through in the entire world. There are millions of people all around the globe who are actually going through stress and anxiety and when I say millions, I actually mean millions of people. Coming to the solution part, let’s discuss some easy and effective breathing practices that can genuinely help to eliminate stress and tension from your everyday life


1. Balanced Breathing:

As the name suggests, the balanced breathing keeps a count on both inhaling and exhaling and therefore balances your breathing process. It is recommended to start your day by this simple exercise that you can perform while sitting on your bed as well. Make sure that only your nose is used when you are doing this exercise since it gives you full control to set the pace accordingly. .

How to do it?

Inhale through your nose, hold the position, and keep holding for up to 4 seconds

Next, exhale the breath for 4 seconds to balance inhaling and exhaling.

This breathing exercise is perfect for a newbie who is just starting with the idea of practicing some breathing exercises in order to manage their stress and anxiety. As mentioned, you can do it anywhere and at any time of the day however, the recommended timings are in the morning right after you wake up.

2. The 4-7-8 Breathing Exercise:

Another great exercise to start your day with, this one is quite simple to perform in your daily lives. This exercise that we are talking about has incredible calming effects that make your system tranquilized right after you practice it. Talking about the frequency, it is perfectly alright to practice this exercise on an everyday basis right in the morning.

How to do this exercise?

1. Put your tongue behind your upper teeth set (such that the tip of your tongue touches your teeth).

2. Breathe in through your nose for about 4 seconds until you are able to hold your breath

3. Hold the position for about 7 seconds

4. Breathe out through your mouth for about 8 seconds (a whoosh sound might be produced since the air passes through your teeth).
You need to repeat the entire cycle for at least 4 times to complete the exercise.

3. Progressive Relaxation Exercise:

When you wake up in the morning, you are a little dizzy, and are vulnerable enough to fall back asleep for a ‘few more minutes’. Hence make sure that you do not practice this relaxation exercise right after you wake up or in the afternoon after having your lunch. However, this exercise has amazing and instantaneous benefits when it comes to relaxation and stress elimination.

How to practice the exercise?

1. Lay on your back in a relaxing position with your head up

2. Your muscle and spine should be straight and relaxed

3. Focus on your breath while you slowly inhale or exhale the air out of your nose

4. Make sure that you keep counting to 5 while both inhaling and exhaling

This exercise has a sure shot therapeutic benefit that helps in relaxation and stress removal.

4. Breath Counting:

Again a simple exercise which is appropriate enough to start your day with. All you need to do is change the rhythm of your breath-ins and breath outs, and keep a check on the intensity of your breath to move forward. As soon as you wake up, go to someplace calmer. It would be perfect if you have a balcony or a terrace to move to since you can listen to the birds chirping when you are practicing this simple breathing exercise in order to bid farewell to all your stress and anxiety.

How to do this exercise?

1. Sit upright on the floor or on a mat in an Asana position with your arms stretched and touching your knees

2. Breath in deeply for 5 seconds and hold the position while keeping a focus on your breath

3. Breath out for 3 seconds through your nose to finish one single cycle of this exercise.

You can perform a set of 5 cycles of this exercise, every single morning to start with.

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