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How Simply Taking The Time To Breathe Can Help Calm Your Anxiety

It's quite easy to get frustrated these days. Since I used to have quite the temper back in the day, I know it's much easier than people think.

Most of us – if not all of us – get frustrated on a daily basis.

Because of all the obligations we have throughout the day, we can never find any down time to just settle our minds and relax. Extremely ambitious people love to fill their days up with enormous amounts of things to do.

This is all well and good, but we all need moments where we can shut our brains off, if only for just a moment. The worst thing you can do is allow life to take control of you.

Thoughts peruse our minds incessantly. Most of the time, we don't even realize it's happening.

It's extremely difficult to even begin to try to not think. Go ahead and try for yourself. Time yourself for around a minute or so, and see how long you last.

Not so easy, is it?

The Benefits Of Mindfulness

Through mindfulness – which is essentially the mental practice of becoming more aware of your emotions – you can remove all your background thoughts.

Numerous studies have already shown the massive benefits to mindfulness, such as reducing stress, intensifying focus, treating heart disease, lowering blood pressure and reducing chronic pain.

Although it is not a magic cure for all of life's enormous problems, it is still a great tool one can use to manage one's emotions.

Although you might be skeptical at first, try it and see for yourself.

We all have the ability to recenter ourselves, despite the fear, guilt and anxiety that creeps up on us throughout the day.

The most simple and basic practice of mindfulness begins with deep breathing. Whenever you start to feel like you're about to lose it, take some time out and just breathe, preferably by either sitting on a chair or on the floor with your eyes closed.

Focus on your breath – and only your breath – as you inhale and exhale. Pay attention to your body's sensations without any judgment, and notice the different emotions bubbling up inside of you. Also notice the various sights, smells and sounds around you.

Whenever you feel like your mind is about to wander, simply redirect it to your breath.

Cultivating mindfulness is a life-long practice. Through deep breathing, you can become acutely aware of your present surroundings, as well as separate yourself from the negative energy that may arise.

Deep breathing has helped me view my emotions unattached, and has allowed me to process them rationally. It has helped me gather myself from the sporadic moments of grief I would succumb to after losing my father and my uncle.

It has given me the ability to concentrate better at work and live in the present, rather than constantly dwelling on the past.

Mindfulness has strengthened my mind.

But most importantly, it has helped me understand how precious every single second we have alive is, and how much of it can be utterly wasted by the inordinate amount of time we spend inside our heads.

We could all use some time to re-orient our thoughts. Fortunately, our work-centric culture is finally beginning to appreciate the importance of practicing mindfulness and self-awareness.

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Naveed Ahsan

Contributor

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