Julie Morley, Personal Psychotherapist and Women's Stress Consultant
(MNCS Accred, Hyp.dip, dip.psysextherapy, Adv.dip.CP, )
Market Deeping, Peterborough, UK
Mob: 07761 065 726 Email: [email protected]
This exercise teaches you how to breathe correctly. Breathing incorrectly can be a habit we get in to and this alone can cause many feelings of anxiety. Being stuck breathing this way can cause us to be unable to deal with many areas of life and we can struggle in stressful situations and stressful thoughts. It sometimes causes hyperventilation where we take in too much oxygen which give us many symptoms such as vision disturbances, pins and needles, pains in the chest, headaches, feeling of unease and other strange sensations.
(Ensure you get these symptoms checked with your GP before dealing with it as hyperventilation)
Hyperventilation, stress in the body or tension sometimes causes us to have repetitive thought processes too and feelings of anxiety and depression which often go hand in hand are harder to eliminate when we can not relax fully and breathe correctly.
The aim of this breathing technique is to breathe down into your belly and not just use
upper chest breathing.
STEP 1 Squeezing exercise
After a few minutes of being still like this, try this squeezing relaxation exercise:-
Focus on your feet and lower legs and squeeze all your muscles very tightly
Then squeeze them even tighter and hold it for a while
When ready leg go very fast
Then focus on feet, lower legs and upper legs and squeeze them, hold it, and
Then focus on hip area, belly, lower back, squeeze and hold it, and then release
Then focus on upper chest and upper back, shoulders, arms and hands, squeeze,
hold and release
Then squeeze facial muscles, neck, brows and squeeze and hold and then release.
When comfy repeating this, try the whole body.
This is a fast way to relax your body. After doing this exercise, it can be easier to
learn the breathing technique.
STEP 2 Breathing
-lay on your back or sit in chair
-Take a deep breath and let out slowly
-Breath a few normal breaths
-Put hand on chest the other on belly
-Breath in slow and gently hold for few seconds
-Let out slow and then…
-Let out a little bit more breath and gently hold for a few seconds.
-Hold for few seconds before breathing in again
See how slow you can do it.
Aim to see if you can get belly to raise on in the breath instead of chest (at first this feels false).
If at any time it feels uncomfortable, stop for a while and wait until you feel ready to go again.