It’s called “Square” or “Box” Breathing... and It is LEGIT. I swear by it!
Here’s why it works:
When we’re feeling anxious, we go into “fight or flight:” the parasympathetic nervous system kicks into action to prepare us for whatever “threat” is to come: blood flow is altered to maximize efficiency, our heart rate increases, muscles become tense, breathing quickens, and our eyes dilate.
That’s cool, I guess, but a little much for me on a regular basis. FYI— prolonged levels of stress hormones in the body can be harmful; we definitely prefer small doses of that stuff.
Slow, paced breathing reverses the stress response and brings the body 🔙 to baseline by activating the sympathetic nervous system to essentially resolve the hyperarousal state. ⠀⠀⠀
Here's how to do it:
Take a big breath in and count to 4️⃣
Hold it for 4️⃣
Slowly exhale for 4️⃣
And hold it for 4️⃣
By the way, this technique was developed by the Navy Seals... so if it's good enough for them, it's good enough for us :)
I literally feel more relaxed, just writing this out. It’s a game changer... seriously. Give it a try!