Breathing Made Easy – To Manage Stress and Reduce Anxiety

Learn and use diaphragmatic breathing to manage stress, reduce anxiety, and become more focused and effective.

  • Understand the physiology of breathing and stress.
  • Learn a structured exercise to activate diaphragmatic breathing.
  • Use a sequential practice to develop the skill in more challenging situations.
  • Use signs of stress as cues to relax rather than signals to tense up even further.

Join our community of over 1900 students learning to manage stress better!

Umm, I think I already know how to breathe.

Yes, almost certainly. And you also know that when you are stressed or anxious your breathing changes. These shifts can feed forward and produce additional symptoms of stress, including lightheadedness, dizziness, chest pressure, a tendency to increase muscle tension, and paresthesias (numbness and tingling in the extremities).

The stress response developed to help us cope with marauding tigers, but it also switches on when we’re confronted with an angry boss, screaming kids, orthat lookfrom our partner. It produces changes in various parts of our body that we’re not used to controlling directly. It would be great to have a handle we could use to ramp stress down – something influenced by stress but over which we also have clear conscious control. That handle is proper breathing.

This course provides instruction in four-stage breathing, an exercise designed to activate the diaphragm, enhance awareness of the distinction between diaphragmatic and intercostal breathing, and provide a strategy you can use to enhance your control over the stress response. You’ll start out practicing when you’re calm and relaxed, then use it in gradually more difficult situations, until you can practice in the middle of that challenging business meeting – and no one will be the wiser.

You’ll get a series of twelve brief lectures, plus downloadable PDF text material on diaphragmatic breathing exercises and how to link your practice to stressful situations.

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