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Anxiety Relief - Breathing Exercise

If you experience anxiety or panic attacks then it may be that you breathe in a shallow way by drawing air into your chest area rather than throughout your lungs.

Below is a breathing exercise that you can try to help when you are experiencing anxiety:

First of all check whether you tend to breathe in a shallow way or more deeply: Rest your hand lightly on you stomach and breathe out all the air. Then take a few breaths. If you find that your stomach(i.e. your lower abdomen) is expanding as you breathe in, then you are breathing in a measured, deeper way, which for the purposes of helping with anxiety and panic is what you want.

On the other hand if your chest expands rather than your stomach when you breathe in, this indicates that you are breathing in a shallow way.

In that case you might want to try the following exercise:

1. Breathe in, imagining the air filling your stomach as you do so. Breathe in through your nose, counting up to three slowly. Relax while doing this and allow your stomach to expand

2. Then breathe out through your mouth for a count of six, relaxing your body and imagining all your stresses floating away from you as you breathe out.

Repeat this exercise for a few minutes until you are relaxed..

Remember to make the 'out' breath longer than the 'in' breath.

To help with your anxiety, practise this exercise regularly for a few minutes each day and also use it if you can when you are feeling stressed or anxious.

 

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