This is a basic outline I use for the slow breathing exercise, but you can adjust some things to fit your tastes.
For example, it's not necessary to have your hands positioned over your chest and stomach, although I do find this easier for guiding my breathe "deep enough" into my lungs. If you do this exercise properly, your stomach should rise after a deep inhalation and fall after a deep exhalation.
You can also technically do this exercise while sitting down or standing up, but to maximize your relaxation you should really do it while laying down comfortably.
Conditioning yourself to be less anxious.
By making it a routine to practice these anxiety reducing techniques, we can begin to slowly condition ourselves to be less anxious of a person. Even just taking 15 minutes every day (or every other day) can have long-term effects on our anxiety and stress levels throughout our everyday life.
In addition to this slow breathing exercise, "The Shyness and Social Anxiety System" also covers 2 other relaxation techniques that can help you combat your anxiety: progressive muscle relaxation and meditation. I plan to cover both of these techniques in the near future (you can stay updated by joining my newsletter ).
The deeper you breathe the better. Do you breathe in your belly, your chest or your neck? How many times do you breathe per minute? You can time yourself. Have fun with it knowing that you are aware of your stress and doing something about it and you will notice tremendous results.
- Next time an anxiety panic attack symptom shows up, monitor your breathing. Then do these easy breathing exercises and do them with your eyes closed for better results. And focus only on your breathing, nothing else. Remember, in and out through the nose.
- Slowly breathe in following the breath into your nose, through your throat, down your lungs and filling the pit of your belly then your lungs. Hold for less than 5 seconds then slowly exhale in reverse order. In other words, pull the belly in as the air leaves and follow it through your lungs, throat and out of your nose. Wait less than 5 seconds before taking another slow breath and continue the process. Do this a minimum of 5 times but the more the better.
- Try this one at bedtime. First understand that the two nostrils are related with and by two very dissimilar energies. Breathing through the right nostril energizes and stimulates us. Breathing through the left nostril, we become relaxed and calm. Our breath naturally changes dominant nostrils between every 2-3 hours. After you eat, your nostrils will change to the left to accommodate the energy needed to digest your food. This is one reason why you may feel like sleeping after eating.
You can tell which nostril is your dominate one at any time simply by blocking off one, then the other. The dominant one is easy to breathe through and the less dominate one feels like it is blocked.
Sit quietly, block off the right nostril and breathe long and deep through the left nostril.