Deep breathing: your secret superpower for reducing stress

Here For It

Just breathe. 

It’s amazing how something as simple as breathwork can often be overlooked when it comes to overall well-being. Deep breathing has been shown to reduce anxiety, prevent insomnia, and keep you focused, to name just a few of the many benefits. It can also help trigger a relaxation response to stress, reduce blood pressure, and help you think more clearly. 

So, how can you bring more focus to your breath throughout the day? Here are a few tips curated by the Rae team to keep you breathing easy (and deeply).

Sit up straight

Mom had it right. Good posture matters, but it’s about a lot more than just sitting pretty. Hunching over your laptop all day can weaken the muscles that keep you upright, preventing you from taking in as much air as your body (and mind) craves. In fact, as much as 30% less. So, sit up, shoulders back and relax.

Breathe with your belly

Many of us tend to breathe through our chest rather than our diaphragm. This prevents oxygen from getting to the lowest part of the lungs. Instead, close your mouth and slowly inhale through your nose. Place your hand on your stomach to ensure it expands. Your chest should remain relatively still. Pause and count to three. Exhale and repeat.

Think good thoughts

Repeat a positive mantra or tell yourself you’re breathing in good vibes. Do the same with each exhale. Imagine you’re pushing out all the bad stuff: worries, fears, deadlines—whatever’s messing with your zen.

Practice makes perfect

Setting aside a few minutes to practice deep breathing daily is key to staying relaxed and focused for the long haul. Guided breathing exercises using apps like Breathe2RelaxUniversal Breathing: Pranayama or Relax: Stress and Anxiety Relief, help make it easy breezy. 

Have your own deep breathing tips? Let us know in the comments, or find us on Instagram @raeforwellness.

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