Oh, anxiety. Anyone who has it knows just how disabling and disheartening it can be. The good news? Just like most things in life, yoga and meditation are some of the best options for alleviating symptoms of anxiety, due to the relief that comes from deep breathing. So, grab your mala beads. Today, we are discussing the top three breathing exercises for anxiety.
The Square Technique
Inarguably, one of the easiest breathing techniques is the “square technique”; it’s so easy that many mindful parents are starting to teach their children this tactic at a young age to help them control their minds and bodies.
Basically, all you have to do is picture a square and draw it in the air with your finger or with your imagination. For every line you “draw”, you do an action. For example:
- Draw the first line and take a deep breath in
- Draw the second line of the square and slowly breathe out
- Draw the third line of the square and slowly breathe in
- Draw the last line of the square and pause
You want to aim to hold each step for a total of 4 seconds to maximize the effects.
The Three Second Count
Yet another simple breathing exercise for anxiety is the three second count. It’s also exceptionally easy to do with your mala bead necklaces. So, double win there!
This breathing exercise consists of breathing in, holding and exhaling – three easy steps. Now, the key is to hold your breath after the inhale for three seconds, hence the name of this exercise. Here’s an example:
- Slowly take a deep breath in through your nose
- Hold your breath for a count of three
- Slowly exhale your breath through pursed lips
As mentioned, you can do this with your mala bead necklaces by moving your fingers across the beads with each step. Continue doing so until you’re back at the guru bead, and you’ll have completed this breathing exercise long enough to receive the powerful benefits.
However, it can also be used without the mala beads and for a couple of minutes.
The 4-7-8 Breathing Technique
Lastly, another popular and equally powerful breathing exercise for anxiety is the 4-7-8 technique. This technique incorporates sounds and long holds to maximize anxiety relief, which makes it a little more complicated than the other ones, but the effects are worth it. Here are the steps to complete to instantly alleviate fear, anxiety and stress:
- Completely exhale and empty out your lungs, making a whoosh sound with your mouth
- Through your nose, breathe in for a count of 4
- Hold your breath for a count of 7
- Exhale through your mouth for a count of 8, making the same whoosh sound
Any type of deep breathing will work wonders for alleviating anxiety and helping you stay calm moving forward. So, when you’re feeling a rise of fear and panic rushing over your body, hold onto the mala bead necklace hanging from your neck and take a moment to breathe. Mala Prayer also has a wide collection of mala bead necklaces for anxiety. So, definitely check those out as well.