Stress Management Deep Breathing Method

By Jamie Sue Tan

Stress is something that all of us are familiar with. A little bit of stress can work to our advantage as it triggers our "fight or flight" response, which gives us more energy and stamina, which in turn helps us work faster, harder, and longer. When left unchecked, stress can build up over time and it starts affecting us physically and mentally. For this reason, it is very important for us to handle and minimize the stress that we feel. Each person has different coping capability when it comes to stress since we all have different individual experiences.

But no matter what the technique or approach is, we have to keep it simple in order to apply it effectively. One of the most basic and effective methods known to handle stress is through deep breathing. Because of its simplicity a lot of people take deep breathing for granted, but if done correctly it can be a powerful tool against stress. For those who don't know yet, a typical person uses just about 20 percent of the total lung capacity. With practice you will be able to learn how to maximize your breathing potential oxygenating your whole body giving dramatic changes to your health and mood.

Proper or correct breathing is critical in maintaining the body's oxygen level. It keeps ideal pH, or acidity, levels and enough carbon dioxide to optimize bodily function. Healthy people make 93% of the energy aerobically. This means tat the energy comes from oxygen alone. Poor breathing habits reduce the amount of energy from 93% to 70%. It is easy to develop good breathing habits, but it requires practice and can take a little time to achieve.

The first step to reverse incorrect breathing habits is to be aware that we are doing it wrong. Average number of respirations per minute is 12. Start focusing and reduce it to 4 respirations per minute. Do not be alarmed. It can be difficult, uncomfortable, and unnatural the first time around. That is normal. With continued practice, one can get used to it.

The best part about deep breathing is that it requires no financial investment and the only equipment you need is your own lungs. You can practice anytime and anywhere. Try to evaluate your normal breathing pattern, learn the diaphragmatic breathing skills, then pace your breathing. Once you have gotten used to it, you will find that it can relieve you of stress wherever you are. - 31520

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