Become aware of your breathing and try to truly feel what is happening. Are you relaxed or stressed? Are you breathing through your mouth or your nose? Are you breathing deep, slow, and smooth or shallow, fast, and rough? Is your breathing quiet or can you hear it?
Did you find a relationship in how you breathe and how stressed or relaxed you are? When I am relaxed, I usually breathe slowly, deeply, and quietly. On the other hand, if I am stressed, my breathing increases, becomes shallow, and I breathe through my mouth.
Breath awareness can let you know you are getting stressed before you realize you are stressed. If you can become aware of your stress throughout the day, it will be easier to let it go. Breath awareness only takes a few seconds. If you do this exercise several times a day, you’ll develop a better understanding of your stress and what is causing it.
We have all heard the saying "take three deep breaths to feel better." If more of us did this, we would be more relaxed. When you find yourself in a stressed state, take 3 or more deep breaths and purposefully try and lengthen, slow, and quiet your breathing. Deepening the breath helps to activate the relaxed mode. Focusing on your breath puts you in the present moment, and makes the stressor less and less important.