A Deep Breathing Technique to Center the Mind and Body

This deep breathing technique focuses your mind, relaxes and centers your body, and improves your breath control.

Breathing is essential to life and plays an important role in the fight against stress.

In fact deep breathing exercises are recommended by most stress magazines, websites, and stress management consultants as a stress management technique.

This is because breathing exercises are:

  • simple to learn
  • effective to use
  • can be used just about anywhere.

Breathing is a natural and automatic function that, with practice, can be used to regulate the mind and body.

Did you know that one of the warning signs of stress and anxiety is shallow, rapid breathing from the chest?

This rapid breathing further increases stress, creating a vicious cycle of increasing stress!

To short-circuit the stress response, this deep breathing exercise uses controlled tempo breathing to focus the mind and center the body.

Deep breathing technique: Controlled tempo breathing

There are several steps to this controlled tempo breathing technique. These steps are:

  1. sit or lie down
  2. close your eyes
  3. bring your awareness to normal diaphragmatic breathing that is effortless and natural
  4. slowly lift one arm and take your radial pulse on the other wrist
  5. note how many beats of your pulse for one exhale of your breath (most people are between 5 and 12 beats per exhalation).

    Let's say that there are 6 pulse beats for each exhalation.

  6. now inhale for 6 counts of your pulse, hold for 6 counts, exhale for 6 counts
  7. do this for 2 minutes and if you would like to continue with deep breathing then move onto this deep breathing exercise.

Deep breathing exercise tip. Exhalation activates the parasympathetic nervous system that is the basis of the relaxation response.

So if you want to increase your feelings of relaxation, extend the exhalation by one or two counts.

This deep breathing exercise is an easy relaxation technique that helps you to center yourself and take control of stress quickly.

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