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  • kattruman73

Breathing to Calm Down

Have you ever noticed your stomach tying up in knots when you think of all of the things on your “To do list”? Or had your mind start racing or going blank during a test or presentation? Try tactical breathing. Tactical or diaphragmatic breathing works to calm us down by activating our parasympathetic nervous system - the system that encourages our body to relax. This type of breathing can be done by inhaling slowly through the nose (to a count of 4 seconds) , drawing your breath down toward the stomach (allowing your abdomen to extend). Exhale through your mouth (to a count of 4 seconds), activating your abdominal muscles as if lightly blowing out candles. Doing this activates your diaphragm (which is innervated by the vagus nerve = bridge to the parasympathetic nervous system). Repeat the cycle 5 or more times (or up to 2 minutes).

Good luck!

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