Many people suffer from anxiety, and an effective way to combat anxiety is by doing deep breathing exercises. By taking deep breaths, you activate your parasympathetic nervous system (the “rest and rumination” state), which helps to calm your nervous system, and is the opposite of the sympathetic nervous system (known as the “fight or flight” response). Try doing this exercise twice per day for about 10 minutes each, to activate your parasympathetic system, using it as a way to counteract your anxiety.

Start by sitting in a relaxing sofa or chair, with your feet on the ground, close your eyes, and place your hands resting on your belly. Then take slow deep breaths in and out, taking 4 seconds in through your nose, and 4 seconds out through pursed lips. You want your belly to naturally expand when you inhale, and then flatten when you exhale. You should be able to palpably feel this with your hands as you perform your slow breaths.

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