Breathing for Stress Relief

One technique that can be useful when you’re at wit’s end and fear lashing out against your kids is using breathing for stress relief.

The first step is to find a good position for your breathing exercise. Find one that makes you comfortable.

The next step is to use proper breathing technique. Naturally, we tend to take short shallow breaths. And if we’re stressed out and upset with the kids, we might be breathing even shallower. Breathing for stress relief calls for taking longer, deeper, fuller breaths. This changes the percentage of carbon dioxide in our systems, putting us in a more relaxed state.

To accomplish this, you should be sure to breathe by pulling your stomach in and out (toward and away from your spine). You should also make sure your shoulders stay relaxed; if the shoulders are moving up and down, your breathing is too shallow. An appropriate deep breath should bring out the stomach, chest, and collar bone.

The appropriate deep breath is very slow. It’s best to allow about 5 to 6 seconds for each inhale and the same for each exhale; however, it’s more important for you to focus on your technique rather than your pace. Breathe in deeply through your nose, and exhale though your mouth.

Do your best to focus your attention on the breathing. The point of breathing exercises is to clear your mind of stress, not give you a better opportunity to focus on it. You’ll probably find your thoughts wandering; just try to bring your mind back to the breathing when you do. As you have more and more experience, you’ll begin to find it easier to focus on your breathing and relaxation rather than the stressed of everyday life.

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