Equal breath exercise

Doing breathing exercises is a skill that you learn over time rather than something that you can assume you're an expert at immediately. As with most things, it takes time for your brain to adapt to the new activity that you are trying. Once you have learned the new behavior, you will be in a better position to use it when you need it most.

The equal breath breathing exercise  is one of the most straightforward exercises to practice and one that I do quite a lot when I'm frazzled.

As always, find a comfortable place to sit with your back upright, or do it lying down if you prefer. Now do the following sequence:

1. Breathe in to the count of four
2. Breathe out to the count of four
3. Repeat this around four to six times. If counting to six and breathing to four is getting too numeric, touch the segments of your fingers with your thumb until you've done the appropriate number fingers.
4. Then, breathe in to the count of five
5. Breathe out to the count of five
6. Repeat six times

Now you can either stay in the low numbers for about four minutes, or you can keep upping the count until you get to ten. As you get into the higher numbers, reduce the number of times you do it. By the time you get to eight, nine and ten you should only do it once otherwise you might go weird and pass out - not recommended.

If you do the longer counting you might like to observe your mind at the end. What thoughts are you thinking? How are you feeling? How does your body feel? Allow yourself some normal breathing to explore yourself before resuming normal activities


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