It all starts with the breath. When life gets challenging, here are five breathing techniques to bring you back into balance.
“All of us are born with the knowledge of how to fully engage the diaphragm to take deep, refreshing breaths,” reports Harvard Health Publishing, “but as we get older, however, we get out of the habit
Inhale while counting to four slowly, hold the breath while counting to four slowly, exhale while counting the four slowly. Congratulations: you’ve relaxed the body, cleared the mind and amplified your focus.
Also known as Bellows Breath is adapted from yogic breathing techniques. If your goal is boosted energy and alertness, try this vigorous exercise.
The appealingly named Lion’s breath folds in face stretches to relieve stress the tension. Breathe in deeply through your nose, breath out forcefully (mouth open wide, tongue sticking out), and exhale forcefully, making a “ha” sound that comes from the deep abdomen.
Hilary Clinton credits it for managing anxiety. “Friends advised me of the power of Xanax and raved about their amazing therapists. But that wasn’t for me, never has been. Instead, I did yoga with my instructor, especially breath work. If you’ve never done alternate-nostril breathing, it’s worth a try.