If you’re lying in bed at night with a racing mind, you may want to consider trying this breath exercise that works wonders to relax the mind and body in a short period of time.
It’s a mindfulness practice that I learned from my daughter who does it in school.
Isn’t it awesome that they are teaching mindfulness in school! The fact that these kids are learning such a useful tool at a young age will help them immensely in their lives especially as they get older and start to deal with anxiety and stress.
To do this practice you only need a few minutes (it’s short!). While you can do it at anytime of day, I tried it at night when I was having a tough time falling asleep.
The rhythmic breathing pattern instantly soothes the body which allows the mind to slow down and relax.
There is a hand gesture that goes with this breath exercise that you can do if you want, but I found that when lying down it’s easier to rest my hands on my belly.
To help relieve anxiety, you can “draw” a square (4 lines) in your head while doing the 4 steps of the breathing in/hold/out/hold.
This will help keep your focus on the square and not your worrisome thoughts.
The main thing is to keep your awareness on the breath, and stay with it!
You don’t really have anything to lose by giving it a try. And if it works, you will have another mindfulness tool in your back pocket for when life starts to get stressful.
Here is the video to watch the square breath exercise. Please let me know in the comments what you think along with what breath exercise you do regularly to help you relax.