Breathing is an innate and typically unconscious activity essential for life. Despite its automatic nature, it can be consciously regulated to manage the stress and anxiety that permeate daily life, promoting better health and longevity. However, a common misconception is equating stress and anxiety. They differ primarily in duration. Anxiety is a sustained emotional state, while stress is typically tied to specific events or situations. One can exacerbate the other, leading to both physiological and psychological ailments. Incorporating specific breathing practices into your daily routine, even just for five to ten minutes, can significantly alleviate anxiety and daily stress.
Both stress and anxiety trigger the release of stress hormones, impacting the nervous system and leading to symptoms like body aches, appetite changes, sleep disturbances, and concentration issues. Since our breath is intrinsically linked to our nervous system, exercises like deep breathing can bolster the nervous and digestive systems, boost energy and focus, lower blood pressure and blood sugar levels, and promote relaxation. Explore the four essential breathing practices recommended by Teresa Adele on forbes.com to better manage and mitigate anxiety.