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A Powerful Technique To Help You Break Free From Anxiety
It's time to take charge!
Do you ever wake up in the middle of the night and immediately start stressing out? Ok, maybe it’s just me.
I stress out a lot.
I stress about what I need to do, what I said and didn't say, what I should have done, deadlines, meetings, presentations, and parenting mistakes.
The stress is endless!
Usually, it is right before I'm about to do something important such as getting out of my comfort zone like giving a presentation or meeting new people.
A few minutes before the event takes place, my body's fight or flight response kicks in, and the classic symptoms appear, such as:
I become anxious
My heartbeat increases
My muscles tense up
My breathing gets faster
It's difficult to focus and concentrate
These symptoms used to throw me off track and not do so well.
But now I have a secret weapon that I use to fight instead of flight because of my anxiety: the 4-7-8 Breathing Technique.
Breathe deeply, until sweet air extinguishes the burn of fear in your lungs and every breath is a beautiful refusal to become anything less than infinite. – D. Antoinette Foy
Lately, I have been using this technique to help me relax in any situation that could raise my anxiety. I have also noticed that practicing it at different times of the day helps me stay relaxed throughout the day, so there are no sudden spikes of anxiety.
What sets this powerful technique apart from other effective ways of managing anxiety, such as meditation and exercise because you can do this exercise anywhere and at any time. You will be able to see and feel results immediately.
The beauty of this technique is that it works even if you only have a few minutes before an important event or maybe you woke up in the middle of the night because of stress; you can do this exercise wherever you are without any disruption or special equipment.
How to practice the 4-7-8 Breathing Technique?
Step 1: Exhale all out completely through your mouth
Step 2: Breath in through your nose for a count of 4
Step 3: Hold your breath for a count of 7
Step 4: Breath out completely through your mouth for a count of 8
Repeat this exercise 4 times as you start off, and as you become comfortable with it, you can increase it to 8 times.
Yes, there is an app for it!
It was a bit difficult for me to start out with the 4-7-8 breathing technique because while I was focused on the breath, I couldn't focus on the counting, so I found the iBreathe app (iOS) to be helpful and to offload the counting part of the exercise. This app makes it simple to follow along using visual cues for each step in the exercise.
For Android users, the Breathe: Relax and Focus app (Android) looks like a good app but I have not tried it out myself.
I'm sure there are many other apps, so find one that works for you.
Also, you don't need to use the app all the time, especially if you wake up in the middle of the night and try to go back to sleep.
Now you have a powerful tool you can use daily or whenever you feel your old friend anxiety show up.
We will not be held prisoners to our anxiety.
We will not be thrown off our game.
We will not fall into the same response patterns as before.
It's time to achieve our potential!
It's our time to shine!
Please let me know if you try it out and your experience using this technique.
As always, I'm here for you.