Do this one breathing exercise to help alleviate your anxiety.
According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), about 40 million American adults experience some type of anxiety disorder every year. A few general anxiety symptoms are nervousness, irritability, restlessness, trouble sleeping, fatigue, fear, and trouble concentrating.
When we’re feeling stressed out and anxious our breath is typically the first to be affected. Our breath can become shallow. Sometimes it speeds up really fast and other times we may find ourselves holding our breath.
By consciously slowing down and deepening the breath, you can slow down your heart rate and draw focus away from racing thoughts in the mind that are creating the discomfort. The best part, the benefits of conscious breathing are almost immediate.
When the Breath wanders, the mind is unsteady, but when the Breath is still, so is the mind still.” – Hatha Yoga Pradipika
So let’s get our Pranayama on!
Wait, what is Pranayama???
To break it down, Prana means life force or breath. Ayama is to extend or to draw out. Together they’re translated as breath extension or control.
There are 8 limbs of yoga. Pranayama is the 4th limb.
Let’s get started:
Begin seated or lying down comfortably.
Your eyes can be closed or have a gentle gaze on something that isn’t moving.
With your palms up, rest the back of your right hand inside of your left palm, with the tips of your thumbs gently touching.
Relax your arms & shoulders.
Breath in through your nose. Pause.
Exhale through your nose. Pause
This is 1 full round of breath.
Repeat this simple breath 21 times. When you get distracted or lose count of your breath just start again.
At the end of your 21st breath, place your palms down on your thighs.
Rest for a few moments.
Slowly open your eyes, smile and enjoy <3
By introducing a daily practice into your life you can help regulate your breath, relax your body, release muscle tension and circulate blood, oxygen and nutrients throughout the body. Creating an overall sense of wellbeing. You do not have to always count up to 21 for this practice but you will need to decide on a # of breaths to commit working towards. When anxiety levels are high, quitting becomes too easy. When you create a goal for yourself, you will get lost in reaching it and end up finding yourself on the other side with a little more peace and calm. Know that the effort and work it takes to get there is always worth it!