Finding Calm Through Belly Breathing
Have you ever felt frustrated or stressed and wished you could find a way to quickly relax? I know I have many times. The demands of work, family, and life in general can really take a toll. I used to just push through the stress and anxiety, assuming it was an inevitable part of the daily grind. But over time I realized that wasn’t sustainable. My health and relationships were suffering. I needed to find a better way.
That’s when I discovered the powerful healing effects of a simple breathing technique called “belly breathing.”
As coach Tyler from WeShape explained, “You need to breathe like this if you want to have a relaxed mind and body.” He went on to say that “if you learn how to breathe this way, In just a couple minutes, you can completely change your state, going from stressed and frustrated to relaxed and peaceful.”
After learning how it works, the science made total sense to me. Most adults breathe primarily into their chests throughout the day. But chest breathing activates your body's “fight or flight” response, releasing the stress hormone cortisol. Belly breathing taps into the “rest and digest” side of your nervous system, signaling your body to calm down.
To do belly breathing, you put one hand on your chest and one on your lower belly. As you inhale through your nose, you push your belly out while keeping your chest still. Only at the very end of the inhale do you let your chest rise slightly. Then as you exhale slowly through your mouth, you lower your chest, followed by your belly.
It can feel a bit unnatural at first, since most of us are so used to chest breathing. But with practice it starts to feel more normal. And the payoff is huge.
I now start my day with 5-10 minutes of belly breathing exercises. It sets the tone, helping me feel centered and prepared for whatever comes my way. I even use short belly breathing breaks throughout the day whenever I start to feel anxious or overwhelmed.
As coach Tyler said, “If you feel like quitting, remember why you started.” Finding calm through breathing is so good for my health and wellbeing. It helps me manage stress, focus better, and live with more purpose and positivity.
Have you tried belly breathing? I highly recommend giving it a shot. This simple but powerful practice can be life changing. As the saying goes, “Smooth seas never made a skilled sailor.” Meeting life’s challenges with resilience starts from within.
So next time you feel your frustration rising, remember to breathe from your belly. With practice, the struggle you feel today really can become the strength you feel tomorrow. Your best self is worth the effort.