Square Breathing Technique.
Let's look at a strategy you can try that only takes a few minutes to significantly reduce your stress, anxiety or anger.
This is a simple and highly effective technique that you can practice for a few minutes anytime you need to boost your creativity or concentration, break free from scattered thinking, or interrupt an intense “fight or flight” response and return to a state of healing and peace. It is also an effective breath to use at the beginning of your mindfulness practice. This centuries old breathing technique for meditation has re-surfaced in the past few years and is being used by athletes, performers, doctors, and even navy seals, as their most effective strategy for quickly entering a calm, centred state of mind and body; especially when they are in an intense situation where they need to be fully present and directly connected to their best self/highest self. Many people I have used this at Redlands Counselling Service have reported that when breathing is used as part of their meditation it has a dramatic, positive impact on their inner and outer well-being.
The Technique: The very basic implementation of this technique is to inhale and exhale in equal proportions.
Step 1 : Inhale and take a deep breath for 4 secs. (count up to 4 while inhaling)
Step 2 : Hold the breath for 4 secs. (count up to 4 while holding)
Step 3 : Exhale completely for 4 secs (count up to 4)
Step 4 : Hold the breath for 4 secs. (count up to 4)
Repeat the process 5 – 6 times.
The Application: This can be done anytime, several times a day. The best part is that you can practice this anytime of a day, wherever you are, at home, office, while travelling, watching TV etc. Once you are accustomed with the 4 square breathing, you can take it to higher level of 5 square, 6 square, up to 10 square.
What are The Advantages?
Release Anxiety and Stress : As this technique involves mind and body at the same time, it is a great stress reducer. You can feel the calmness just after doing this exercise.
Controls breathing pattern : This greatly controls and organises our pattern of breathing and in-turn controls our emotions and make us more responsive rather than reactive.
Improves Focus and Concentration : Do this exercise during small breaks when you are doing something important. This will greatly increase your concentration. Try it now and feel the difference right away.
Boosts brain energy : Great exercise for brain and nervous system. Calms and rejuvenates you within seconds.