Quick: think of three things that make you feel anxious or stressed. Most of us have no trouble coming up with answers. While belly breathing alone can’t fix deep-seated anxieties, it’s an effective and natural way to ease anxiety and everyday stress. Belly breathing can help turn your automatic fight-or-flight response into a beneficial relaxation response.
Most people are chest breathers, which is how we react to stress. When we sense a threat – such as the stress of work, finances, moving, or personal confrontations – our fight-or-flight response tells us to breathe at a rapid pace to suck in extra oxygen. This is meant to be a short-term reaction, but in today’s world we are often surrounded by stressors. This leaves us in a state of tension, and we may not even notice it.
One way to change our reaction to stress is to focus on belly breathing instead of chest breathing. This stimulates the vagus nerve, which runs from the head down the neck, through the chest, and to the colon, activating your relaxation response. This in turn reduces your heart rate and blood pressure, and lowers stress levels.
You take up to 23,000 breaths per day, so make sure you do it right. Oxycise has given you the tools you need.
Every time you feel stressed, simply take three slow and controlled deep belly breaths, placing one hand on your belly and one hand on your chest to help focus the breathing correctly into the diaphragm. This interrupts the fight-or-flight response so your body can begin to relax and handle daily stressors.