Updated: May 15
If you are someone that suffers from anxiety, I'm sure you have felt that tightness in your chest, the constant feeling of pressure, panic, or that overall triggered state of being.
Breath work is a free, accessible, highly effective technique that can help you reduce symptoms on the spot! Keep reading to learn…
• Why breath-work is important
• What are the key benefits of breath-work
• How to use it to manage anxiety
What is breath-work?
Breath work is simply just intentional breathing. You can use it any time, any place anywhere. How does it work? There are two parts of your nervous system, your sympathetic, which is your fight or flight response. And your parasympathetic nervous system, which is your “rest and digest”.
Most of us that live in a chronic state of stress with high intensity jobs, which signals our sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight) to be constantly switched ON. Ideally, that part of your nervous system is really only supposed to be activated, maybe 1-2% of your life. Using breath-work allows you to intentionally trigger your parasympathetic nervous system to turn on and allow your body to ‘rest and digest’. Your brain cannot tell the difference between real danger or perceived danger. Your brain actually thinks that, the thought of messing up in a presentation or losing your job is just as dangerous as getting hit by a car. It's our job to then cue our brains to say, “No, no, no, I'm not dying today”.
What are the key benefits of breath-work?
It helps reduce stress and anxiety! Especially now with COVID-19, it helps boost our immune system and improves our energy level. Every cell in your body needs oxygen to survive, and it needs optimal oxygen levels to maintain healthy function. If you want to improve your health, improve your stress level, you really need to maximize your oxygen levels. This is the reason why every Apple watch now cues you to stand up and BREATH.
What most people don't know is using your breath also helps you clear emotional trauma and move energy through your body. So if you have any stored emotional issues, breath-work allows you to move that out and through your body, it also can increase your happiness level, your joy level and keep you grounded in the present moment.
So when is it appropriate to use breath-work? The more, the better! It will increase your energy level, increase your focus, and you can use it daily at your desk. You can use it when you're meditating and anytime that you feel that panic coming on or anxiety level increasing.
How to practice..
The main thing to focus on when you're practicing is to exhale for double the amount of time that you inhale. So normally I'd like to start people off inhaling for a four count, holding for a four count and then exhaling for an eight count. But if that seems too strenuous, then you can always inhale for two count hold for a two count and exhale for a four count. (Please watch my YouTube video HERE to see the demonstration)
My name is Amy Lynn Walsh. I am a rapid transformational therapist, a hypnotherapist and a mindset coach. So if you'd like to learn more about reducing your anxiety, book your clarity call.
Download your FREE GUIDE TO BREATH-WORK HERE!