7 Quick Breathing Techniques for Improved Mood, Peace of Mind, and Pain Reduction

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Focusing on your breath is one form of meditation. These simple exercises will send you down a gentle path of peace and self discovery.

Breath is literally your life source, don’t underestimate the power of focusing on your breath. When you can control your breath, you can control your thoughts. When you can control your thoughts, you can be thoughtful about your actions. Think about how powerful that is!

1. Yoga Breath for Mindfulness & Centering

A yoga breath is a deep, slow inhalation and exhalation. I usually do them in sets of three before other breathing exercises, setting an intention, practicing yoga or settling down for meditation. This is my go to starting point for centering myself.

Lengthen your spine, close your eyes, and come into your space.

Inhale filling your lower abdomen, upper abdomen, lower chest, upper chest, throat, face, top of your head – everything is expanded, pause at full for a moment.

Exhale in reverse from top of the head, face, throat, upper chest, lower chest, upper abdomen, lower abdomen – everything is contracted, pause at empty for moment.

Repeat for at least three rounds in total.

2. Box Breath for Calibrating Yourself & Tuning Into Your Internal Rhythm

Begin the box breath by selecting a number. I usually use 3 for joy, 5 for change or 7 for connection to spirit. Suppose you select 3, you will inhale for a count of 3, hold at the top of the inhalation for 3 heartbeats, exhale for a count of 3, hold at the bottom of the exhalation for 3 heartbeats.

Keep following this box breath, equal inhalations, pauses for heartbeats and exhalations for at least three iterations. Play with with different counts to see what feels the most natural or soothing for you.

Reflecting for a moment, when was the last time you felt your own heartbeat, your own internal rhythm? When you control your breath and tune into your heartbeat, you are calibrating yourself, bringing yourself back to a neutral point.

3. Relaxation Breath to Reduce Tension

This exercise chooses a 5 heartbeat pause because 5 represents change.

Deep inhale and pause for 5 heartbeats… Exhale all the tension from your jaw.
Deep inhale and pause for 5 heartbeats… Exhale all the tension from your eyes.
Deep inhale and pause for 5 heartbeats… Exhale all the tension from your shoulders.
Deep inhale and pause for 5 heartbeats… Exhale all the tension from your hips.
Deep inhale and pause for 5 heartbeats… Exhale all the tension from your body.
Inhale white light and pause for 5 heartbeats… Exhale white light

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4. Love in Your Heart Breath for Dealing with Difficult People

Inhale, thinking of someone who brings you joy, pause… Exhale, send love to that person.
Inhale, thinking of someone who you are grateful for, pause… Exhale, send love to that person.
Inhale, thinking of someone who challenges you, pause… Exhale, send love to that person.
Inhale, thinking of someone else who challenges you, pause… Exhale, send love to that person.
Inhale, thinking of someone who you are grateful for, pause… Exhale, send love to that person.
Inhale, thinking of someone who brings you joy, pause… Exhale, send love to that person.

5. Happiness Breath to Improve Mood

This exercise chooses a 3 heartbeat pause because 3 represents joy.

Inhale happiness, pause 3 heartbeats
Exhale gratitude, pause 3 heartbeats
Inhale gratitude, pause 3 heartbeats
Exhale optimism, pause 3 heartbeats
Inhale optimism, pause 3 heartbeats
Exhale happiness, pause 3 heartbeats

Repeat as needed.

6. Target Breath for Pain Reduction

When you have pain, breathe into the pain and determine exactly where it is located in your body. If it is your back for example, breathe into that space on your back.

Consider the space that you identify as pain as a grid. Can you isolate where the pain is coming from in the grid, which square exactly? If you can, zoom into that square with your breath and consider that smaller space you identified as pain as a new grid. Repeat.

After a few zoom ins, you may not be able to locate the pain. Our body uses pain to get our attention, but like a child, it doesn’t always have something to say. It just wanted our attention.

If after several zoom ins you are still in pain, you have checked in and determined more precisely where it is emanating from. This detail may give you or your doctor better information for treatment.

Work with this tool if it resonates with you. Like anything, it doesn’t work 100% of the time, but I am always grateful when it does.

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7. Rainbow Breath for Becoming Comfortable with Change, Improved Mood, Centering & Mindfulness

This exercise chooses a 5 heartbeat pause because 5 represents change.

Inhale red, hold for five heartbeats as the red transforms to orange.
Exhale orange, hold for five heartbeats as orange transforms to yellow.
Inhale yellow, hold for five heartbeats as yellow transforms to green.
Exhale green, hold for five heartbeats as green transforms to blue.
Inhale blue, hold for five heartbeats as blue transforms to indigo.
Exhale indigo, hold for five heartbeats as indigo transforms to violet.
Inhale violet, hold for five heartbeats as violet transforms to white light.
Exhale white light, hold for five heartbeats.

Tune into any colors that serve you now, inhale and exhale these colors for several breaths at your own pace.

Good luck with these exercises!
BREATHE, just BREATHE

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11 thoughts on “7 Quick Breathing Techniques for Improved Mood, Peace of Mind, and Pain Reduction

  1. Yes, it is important we learn to breathe properly – I do some yoga exercise in the morning before I am off to work and one of the key things I do once done is do some deep breathing exercise, nothing more, nothing less. You will be surprised to see how many people don’t do proper breathing in, breathing out and then get so tensed up.

  2. My breath post last June was not about technique as yours clearly is. The deep abdominal breath takes time to learn and your post was an excellent reminder, not an easy post to write but you tackled it.

    1. Breath is like a knob with limited movement on our central nervous system. We can adjust the volume a bit, but we can’t turn it off. I think we have to take advantage of the minor adjustments we can make. Always wonderful to see you here, thank you!

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