by Alan Davidson
I use this breath the most when I sit down to meditate and my mind is darting forth-and-back, grasping every thought like a shiny new toy. Or when I’m about to give a speech and my perfection-anxiety kicks into high gear.
This simple but highly effective breath is perfect for a stress smack-down. It’s the #1 anti anxiety breathing exercise. If you sense any anxiety at all, two minutes of this breath will give you a shift in your energy…and your serenity.
The focus on the out breath activates your parasympathetic nervous system – that’s the part of your nervous system that calms and sooths your body-heart-mind.
This breath is potent, yet ridiculously simple. It goes like this…
In-breath for a count of three,
Pause for a count of one,
Out-breath for a count of six,
Pause for a count of one.
Again your focus is on the out-breath. Your exhale is twice as long as your inhale.
Repeat the cycle for a minute, two, or even ten. Then let your breath balance out, the in-breath matching the out-breath.
Guaranteed to bring a sense of relaxation and peace to any stressed-out would-be inspirational speaker, meditator, or anyone suffering stress.