Reduce Stress and Anxiety–Breathing Deep: A Mind/Body/Soul Medicine
Breathing Deep is truly a Mind/Body Soul Medicine. One of the best ways to reduce stress and anxiety–more importantly, to reduce our reactions to stressors is incorporating a Deep Breathing Practice. Understand that our bodies are under constant assault and one of the main villains is? If you said stress you’d have some of that answer but the other part of the answer is the ways in which we react to stressors help to do us in. A lot of our woes are tied to the way we bounce off the things that stress us out.
When The SRL Goes UP UP UP…
Notice what happens you get stressed out and anxious, (the two usually go hand in hand) reeeeeally begin to pay attention. The heartrate increases as your muscles tense up– they are going into fight or flight mode. That happens as your adrenal glands fire adrenaline. You may or may not feel your blood pressure going up but it is. In some cases, depending on your SRL (Stress Reaction Level) your voice may rise, you may even perspire more. Pay attention to what happens to you under fire. You can also observe others in their habits but it is always more important to know what is happening with YOU.
In addition, your breathing becomes more shallow–there’s nothing like providing less oxygen to your brain, ehhhhhh not something ya wanna do. Now if you get headaches, backaches, stomach aches, have ulcers, IBS, Crohn’s or any type of ailment, those may kick into high gear joining in a disharmonic chorus to accompany the stress/anxiety response.
Not exactly the behavior to reduce stress and anxiety but giving us the total opposite–ADDING to our stress and anxiety.
Ooooooo boy! Are we feelin’ good yet?
When We Take/Make The Time to Ahhhhhhhhh, Breathe, WATCH OUT!
You know how good it feels and how restorative it is to be out in Nature right? To take in the air of the surroundings is just sublime. In those moments, you’ve stepped away from what is eating you when you immerse yourself in the balm that is this great planet we share. Taking in the colors, listening to the sounds, feeling the sun. Oh man, I’m feeling good just thinking about it!
And there in lies the POWER of The Mind. You can put yourself anywhere in an instant with Intention. The same happens with deep breathing, the focus shifts to the air moving into and out of ourselves. Deep breathing is a prayer, it is reverence to our being–holding ourselves in the highest of regard to make time for self-care and healing. And it doesn’t have to take a lot of time.
Taking deep breaths helps to reverse some of the issues–it slows the heartrate, tells the adrenals to hold their guns. Blood pressure lessens, and you are in a better position to release your hold on fear, worry, anxiousness, stress, etc. Deep breathing helps to relax the muscles and can help to turn the volume down on some of the aches. In other words, a great way to reduce stress and anxiety! In addition, if you can quiet the mind enough you may also get hear/feel some insights pointing you in a direction toward solutions.
From the Harvard Medical School’s Harvard Health Publishing: “Deep abdominal breathing encourages full oxygen exchange — that is, the beneficial trade of incoming oxygen for outgoing carbon dioxide. Not surprisingly, it can slow the heartbeat and lower or stabilize blood pressure.”
Deep breathing connects us to our Divine Guidance and to the Divine Self.
And Speaking of Guidance…
Many of us don’t have the opportunity to be out in Nature enough or for long enough periods of time, and often when we return (or even on the way) to our work and/or home we drop right back into our stress and anxiety patterns. We have to be able to tap into the place of Peace at will no matter where we are or what’s going on. And one of the great and efficient ways to do that is through the Conscious breath.
In the video below, I illustrate and demonstrate 4 breathing techniques:
- Breathing in and out through the nose
- Breathing in through the nose, out through the mouth
- Diaphragmatic breathing (in through the nose, out through the mouth) which engages the stomach pushing out and contracting in–it also serves as a killin’ exercise for the abs!
- Ujjayi Breathing, also called ‘Victorious Breath’ ‘Ocean Breathing’ ‘Ujjayi Pranayama’
And for more assistance, I have guided meditation audio for a quick fix of 5-6 minutes, or a longer immersion try my Restorative Live tracks, guided meditation videos and music to help you in your stress reduction endeavors. I also offer custom guided meditation to fit your needs and if you want to book a one on one StressBusters Guided Meditation, you can do that too woo-hooooo!!
With a Mindfulness and Awareness Practice you get onto the trail of becoming more in tune with YOU.
BECOME the Peace You wish to see.
Thank you for reading, won’t you share this with a friend, family member and/or colleagues?