Of all the skills to help with life’s anxieties, breathing skills are some of the most popular for dealing with stress and anxiety. When you begin to feel tightness in your chest, shoulders or lower back (wherever your stress tends to manifest itself in your body), you can observe that as a signal that you need to find a quiet spot to breathe. Take a deep breath in, and hold it for a few seconds, then let it out over a few seconds. Repeat this once or twice. You can imagine breathing in calm and breathing out tension or breathing in relaxation and breathing out irritability. Our brain believes what we tell it, so the words you say to yourself as you do this have power.
Even one deep, cleansing breath can help. Obviously, you don’t want to breathe in germs, so be mindful of the area around you. There are lots of places where it is perfectly safe to take deep, cleansing breaths.
The Superhero Pose
Everyone working at Augusta Health right now is here because they care about the health of our patients, neighbors and community. All of us, pulling together to do what is right to keep ourselves, our families and our community safe, are considered superheroes.
The superhero pose can help everyone soothe during an anxious time. To strike the pose, stand with your feet apart, hands on hips, shoulders back, chest out and chin up. Doing this pose for as little as two minutes decreases the cortisol (the hormone associated with stress) in our bodies by 25%. It also increases the testosterone (the hormone associated with power) by 20%. Be mindful, and be safe.