Guided breathing exercises are an effective tool to help us regulate emotions. When we are feel like our minds are spinning, our heart is racing, and we are having a difficult time finding calm, we can begin with a breath. Taking a moment to slow our breathing gives us a chance to settle ourselves and manage our emotions. Practising deep breathing several times a day can help to increase alertness and reduce feelings of anxiety and stress.
In today’s Wellness Wednesday, we practise a simple breathing exercise.
As a class, group, or family:
Try “Box Breathing”.
o Start by closing your eyes. Breathe in through your nose while counting to 4 slowly.
o Hold your breath inside while counting slowly to four.
o Begin to slowly exhale while counting to 4.
o Repeat steps 1-3 at least three more times.
NOTE: Breathing exercises, like any other skill, take practise. It is common to have trouble holding your attention on your breath at first. With practise, this becomes easier.
Ask yourself, there is no wrong answer:
How do you feel after doing the breathing exercise?
Did you notice any differences in how you normally breathe and your breath during the breathing exercise?
Connecting to our faith:
“The spirit of God has made me, and the breath of the Almighty gives me life.” (Job 33:4)
Further Learning: ·
VIDEO: “Finding Calm – Guided Breathing” (1:41) from SMHO https://youtu.be/le2TO_MNFxE
ADULT BOOK: “The Healing Power of the Breath” by Richard Brown and Patricia Gerbarg · EDUCATOR RESOURCE: “Breathe With The Bell” (elementary) https://smho-smso.ca/fw/stress-management-and-coping/deep-breathing/breathe-with-the-bell/ or (secondary) https://smho-smso.ca/fwsecondary/stress-management-and-coping/deep-breathing/breathe-with-the-bell/
SOCIAL MEDIA SHARABLE: “Box Breathing” https://smho-smso.ca/wp-content/uploads/2021/08/Pause-5-1024x1024.jpg
EDUCATOR RESOURCE: Breathing Strategies lesson plan https://web.microsoftstream.com/video/71ec4320-f6f8-4c7c-9670-5ae9a8d0fc7c
CAREGIVER RESOURCE: “Easy and Fun Mental Health Activities for Home” (1st activity) https://smho-smso.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/EDMH-ParentActivities-FINAL-EN.pdf