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wellbeing: HOW TO EASE ANXIETY IN SECONDS

ease anxiety

EVERYONE FEELS ANXIOUS AT SOME POINT

whether it’s a fleeting moment or a lot of the time, this simple ‘mind hack’ can help


While anxiousness lives in the mind, its symptoms can be very physical: a racing heart, breathlessness and trembling are all common effects, which can progress into a full-scale panic attack. This simple ‘mind hack’ from BigThink claims to stop anxiety, by ‘fooling’ the body that you are feeling super chilled out. And it’s actually pretty easy to do.

Called ‘power breathing’, the technique simply involves breathing out for a longer period of time than you breathe in. So, in for 4, out for 8, in for 8, out for 16… you get the picture.

Jane McGonigal, author of SuperBetter, explains this simply switches the body’s nervous system from a ‘sympathetic’ state to a ‘para-sympathetic’ state.

The first state basically refers to when your body is in worked up, ‘fight or flight’ mode, the second, she explains, is a ‘rest and digest’ or ‘calm and connect’ state. This power-breathing manages to cleverly mimick what the body would normally do when it feels calm. {When you’re in a natural, non-panicked state your out-breaths are long than your in-breaths.} How long you breathe in/out for, depends on how anxious you’re feeling. If you’re pretty worked up, start by just breathing in for two seconds, out for four, until you feel okay enough to extend the breaths, slowly working up to breathing in for eight, out for 16.

So, next time you feeling a little anxious, or have a migraine coming on, or even if you’re experiencing muscle spasms, it’s worth giving it a try. {I’ve showed my boys this video too, great for exam time at school!}

{Pic: Spell Designs}

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