Here is a simple exercise that will improve your ability to breathe from the diaphragm, achieve the relaxation response, reduce stress and quiet your mind.
Practice the following at least five minutes, twice a day.
- Find a quiet, comfortable place to sit or lie down
- Place your feet slightly apart and find a comfortable position for your arms.
- Inhale through your nose and exhale through your mouth
- Concentrate on your breathing
- Inhale while slowly counting to four. Notice with each breath you take that you should feel as if the air is first expanding warmth to all parts of your body.
- Pause for 1 second, and then slowly exhale to a count of four. As you exhale, your abdomen should move inward. As the air flows out, feel the tension and stress leave your body
- As you begin to relax, clear your mind of any distractions by imagining a peaceful, healing environment
- Repeat the process for 5 to 10 minutes or until you achieve a sense of deep relaxation.