We all get stressed from time to time. Work, school, home, bills, kids, and a thousand other things can all contribute to stressful situations in our lives. But there is a simple effective way to relieve stress that takes only two minutes to learn, and can instantly relieve your stress once you get the hang of it. Below are four simple steps to follow.
1. Sit with your back straight but not tense. Loosen any clothing that feels tight around your waist if you can.
2. Inhale slowly through your nose. Exhale slowly and completely through your mouth.
3. Make sure you are breathing deeply using your diaphragm (a sheet of muscle at the bottom of the lungs), by placing your hand on your belly and allowing your hand to expand outwards as you inhale. When you exhale, let that hand fall back to its original position. It may feel strange at first. It takes practice, so be patient with yourself.
4. The last step is to count. Exhalation should take twice as long as inhalation.
• Breathe in and count in your head starting from one
• Breathe out and try to make twice as long
If you counted to three when you inhaled, count to six when you exhale.
That’s it! It’s as simple as that.
When you’re beginning, repeat this 4 or 5 more times and work up from there.
As you practice this breathing technique, you’ll find it becomes more and more effective at relaxing you when you’re stressed.
In the middle of a busy day, it’s an easy way to give yourself a quick, well-deserved break, to take care of you.