I have helped many people with anxiety issues help reduce it significantly just by developing deep breathing strategies. Through regular practice, learning to breathe deeply can greatly reduce anxiety. I teach breathing through counting, breathe in for a count of 4= hold for a count of 4- breathe out for a count of 4= pause and keep going until you feel calm. Or another way is to count each exhale, once you get to 10 you start over again until you are calm. Breathing exercises such as these examples can make a difference especially when they are practiced regularly. It also helps to be practiced when you are calm so it is easier to do when anxious. Breath awareness helps you to be able to calm yourself and take your focus away from your worries.
There are some people I have found who try the breathing exercises but their anxiety still is pervasive. Some people seem to benefit from both breathing and movement exercises combined together. Research shows that this can significantly reduce anxiety. The most well known exercise with breath and movement is yoga. What I love to teach others is seated yoga positions which are simple enough for anyone to do and easy to remember. Coordination of breath and movement takes practice but it is can be accomplished. Tai Chi exercises are another way to coordinate breath and movement and help regulate energy in your body. Through these exercises it can help you to feel calmer and more relaxed. The easiest place to start is to look at some videos on youtube for seated yoga or Tai Chi for beginners. Trying a yoga or Tai Chi class in your local gym or community center is another good option.
A simple exercise you can do right now is to sit with both feet on the floor and your back against a hard chair. Rest your hands on your lap palms facing down. Allow your shoulders to relax and you can close your eyes if you feel comfortable with that. Slowly raise up your arms straight up in the air while taking a deep breath. Stop when your arms are straight in the air above your shoulders. Slowly exhale and release your arms down to your side slowly until they are at your sides. Take another breath in and slowly raise your arms up again. Release them down again as you slowly exhale. Notice how you feel after doing this several times. It can make a tremendous difference as you tune into both your breath and your body. So if you are someone who has foundnthat breathing exercises aren’t enough in regulating your anxiety, consider trying some movement exercises. It may make a huge difference in your ability to better manage your anxiety.
If you are someone you care about is having problems managing their anxiety, please call 919-618-6526 today for a free consultation. Remember help and hope is available.