The effects of breathing techniques on anxiety have been studied at length, and I use them with my clients to encourage using the breath as a means of increasing awareness and mindfulness. Regular deep breathing slows the action of the heart, reduces blood pressure, alleviates the symptoms of stress and anxiety, and helps to relieve digestive problems. I practice Kapalabhati every morning for 10 minutes which helps to oxygenate body and mind, with those who suffer from stress, (sometimes insomnia) I teach breathing techniques that stimulate the Rest and relaxation Response – Observing the Pause is a key technique for this. HOW TO DESTRESS WITH A ONE MINUTE BREATH PRACTICE

Breathing practice: A 1 minute exercise for de-stressing your day



Sit at the end of your office chair, back straight, and make sure that your feet are hip distance apart.

With one hand on the chest and the other on the belly.  Allow the natural breath to settle for a moment.

Come to observe the natural breath. Count the number seconds on the inhalation and the number of seconds on the exhalation.

After a moment or so, you will note that there is a brief and momentary pause in between the breaths.

Firstly at the end of the inhalation, and at the end of the exhalation.  Continue to breathe in this way without forcing the breath in anyway.

Allow the chest to open deeply with the inhalation, and follow the exhalation all the through to its natural conclusion.

At the end of the exhalation wait for the inhalation to come towards you, without you going towards the inhalation.

In this way the natural four part breath cycle occurs spontaneously and naturally and the Rest & Relaxation response is triggered after 3 – 5 minutes.

Keep in mind, that those who operate in a stressed state all the time might be a little shocked how hard it is to control the breath in stressful situations.  So, I would recommend preparing oneself for such situations in advance with a simple daily Breathing Practice.

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  • Jason Carpentier
    Posted at 21:18h, 17 May Reply

    Hi, I tried this breathing practice in the office today, and it worked well. Thank you!

  • pam
    Posted at 09:32h, 16 April Reply

    I had no idea how to breathe before now..this is amazing

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