No matter how busy you are, you can find five minutes or fewer in your day to take better care of yourself. Here are five expert tips on relaxing your body, soothing anxiety and coping with stressful thoughts.
1. Practice 3-3-6 breathing. According to Darlene Mininni, Ph.D, author of The Emotional Toolkit, this type of breathing provides more oxygen to the brain and activates the parasympathetic nervous system. That slows down breathing and heart rate, relaxes the muscles and causes blood vessels to dilate, improving blood flow. It essentially sends a message to your brain that everything is OK, and there’s no reason to fight or flee, Mininni said.
You can practice this breathing technique any time, anywhere, whether you’re waiting in line, stuck in traffic or sitting at your desk.