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5 Breathing Exercises To Calm Anxiety

    Anxiety is an emotion that is often misunderstood, where many people mistake their anxiety for nerves or being afraid. Having anxiety can affect your sleeping patterns, cause stress in relationships, and even lead to eating disorders. While anxiety is a symptom of many underlying mental health issues, it’s important to remember that anxiety is a natural emotion with its negative effects. It’s not something that needs to be destroyed.


    The anxiety that can come from a stressful day can sometimes be too much for someone to handle. Some people find that taking a deep breath and slowly letting it out helps them relax and feel more relaxed. Breathing exercises to calm anxiety are the best way to soothe your mind and improve your mood. Simple and easy breathing exercises can be one of the most powerful ways of overcoming the anxiety plaguing you.


    Breathing exercises are a great way to help calm the mind, body, and spirit when feeling anxious. These breathing exercises are also known as “belly breathing” and “mindfulness exercises,” — and while the name is a bit misleading, these breathing techniques are great ways to relax.

    Breath Focus


    Breath focus breathing exercise is a great way to relax and release stress. It is beneficial for the heart rate, respiratory system, and mental health of individuals. Breathing exercises are done in many different ways, but breath focus is one of the most popular methods. 


    How To do Breath Focus


      1. Sit tall with your back straight up against the seatback, feet flat on the floor, shoulders relaxed down away from ears. 
      1. Place one hand over your belly button area and use the other hand as a pointer finger resting lightly against your sternum (directly below where the collarbone attaches). 

    3. You may want to put a small cushion under both hands if necessary for comfort.

    Resonant Breathing


    Resonant breathing is a practice used to open up the chest, release tension around the neck and shoulders, and improve lung capacity. It is also done in tandem with other yoga poses, weight lifting, or pilates moves. 


    1) Assemble with your spine upright and your shoulders back but not rigid. 

    2) Place one hand on the other fist 

    3) Close your mouth 

    4) Inhale slowly through the nose, pause for three seconds 

    5) Open mouth slightly 

    6) Exhale through pursed lips or as if blowing out a candle 

    7). Repeat steps 1-5 ten times

    Alternate Nostril Breathing

    It is an excellent method to reduce stress and anxiety. It can also be used as a tool for meditation. 


    Alternate nostril breathing has been practiced for centuries in both the Eastern and Western world, with many practitioners attributing benefits corresponding to their philosophies on life.


    1) Place your right thumb on the area that is in between your eyebrows. It will help you focus on the task at hand. 

    2) Inhale through your left nostril as you close off your right nostril with either fingers or palm. Hold for 5 seconds, then exhale through both nostrils together (don’t block any nose). Breathe deeply from all parts of the lungs, including the stomach and chest area.

    3) Do this 3-5 times and make sure to switch sides every time so that you are not leaning towards one side more than another! If done correctly.

    Lion’s Breath

    Lion’s breath exercise is an easy form of meditation that anyone can do. It is an excellent technique for when you are feeling stressed, anxious, or angry. This breathing exercise will help to lower your blood pressure and reduce the symptoms of depression.

    Lion’s Breath Exercise


    Breathe in for four moments for your nose while counting to four; hold your breath for 2 seconds; exhale slowly through pursed lips by counting to eight (or longer if possible); close off your mouth and breathe in again with a deep breath from the diaphragm, filling up with air until you feel like you are about to explode before finally releasing it all at once. Repeat this process three more times. 

    Box Breathing


    Box breathing is a manageable and efficient way to calm down when you’re feeling stressed. It’s a form of active meditation done in any position, including standing or lying down.


    1) Breathe in deeply for four seconds 

    2) Hold your breath for four seconds 

    3) Breathe out slowly for four seconds 

    4) Hold breath again for four seconds 

    5) Repeat this pattern two more times. Remember not to hold your breath at any point during this process as this could lead to hyperventilation which would make symptoms worse.




    Breathing exercises are an excellent method to calm anxiety. They can be used as an effective self-help tool or in conjunction with therapy. These exercises are beneficial for people of all ages and backgrounds, including those with ADHD, autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and other developmental disabilities. People find them helpful during episodes of high anxiety when they need something quick to do before the attack subsides and daily as part of their routine.