Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Following your breath

There are lots of breathing exercises for helping with anxiety. That’s because focusing on our breath brings us into our body, where our anxiety is. If we’re not in our bodies, we can’t relieve our anxiety. That can be a catch 22 as I’ve spoken about in other posts. We don’t want to be in our bodies because that’s where the anxiety is, but it’s where we need to be to resolve the anxiety. Most of the time we’re in our heads trying to control things with endless thoughts. Sitting comfortably in our bodies doesn’t just relieve anxiety though, it also makes us feel at home, and at peace with ourselves.

I find following my breath to be very effective in relieving anxiety. I don't make my breath do anything, I follow its rhythms and I nearly always find that my breathing naturally becomes deeper and slower. I do pay attention to expanding my rib cage though. Making our breath “do” something can make us even more anxious and sometimes, deep breathing exercises can cause hyperventilation. This is when the constricted breathing technique from EFT can come in very handy.

When we’re stressed our breathing is affected, so doing something about our breathing can help relieve our stress and anxiety, and vice versa. The constricted breathing technique is very good for working on your own with EFT, it can be difficult working on our own issues, we often can’t see the woods for the trees, so going in the physical door, as Gary Craig calls it, is often simpler then trying to figure things out psychologically.

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