Feeling stressed or like your life is out of control? Tackle it by doing something you do have power over: breathing. Deep breathing is one of the best ways to lower stress in the body. It takes little time, requires no equipment, and can be done anywhere. Here are three basic breathing exercises to try.
4-7-8 (Relaxing Breath) Exercise
The 4-7-8 (Relaxing Breath) exercise is simple and calms the nervous system. Sit with your back straight. Place the tip of your tongue against your upper front teeth, and keep it there through the entire exercise.
Stimulating Breath Exercise
The Stimulating Breath exercise is aimed is to increase energy and alertness. This is a great exercise to try next time you feel yourself reaching for a cup of coffee!
Breath Counting Exercise
The Breath Counting exercise is quiet and slow. Sit in a comfortable position with your spine straight and head inclined slightly forward. Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths. Then let the breath come naturally without trying to influence it.
For more information on lowering your stress, consider contacting your local installation Community Counseling Program or Military OneSource at www.militaryonesource.mil.
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