This 5-second breathing trick can help soothe anxiety and stress


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Words by WYLDE MOON staff writer

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It may sound too good to be true, but checking how you breathe could help you live better. Try this one simple exercise and see how you feel.

WYLDE MOON embraces self-discovery, but embarking on major life changes without first looking after the basics in your life can be doomed to fail.

According to well-being consultant, Saied Shahsavari, one of the most important building blocks in our lives is knowing how to breath in and out properly.

If it sounds far too simple to have any effect on your happiness and day-to-day living, Saied explains the power of this simple reflex action we all do an estimated 22,000 times a day. While we can go days without food or drink, if we don’t breathe we will die within minutes.

“The first connection a baby has with the universe when they are born is to breathe,” he says.

So, how can we do it in a way that makes us feel better?

“After 40 years I have never seen someone with anxiety problems who also doesn’t have some breathing problems too. Before I talk to people about their lives and their issues we check their breathing first.”

“Eastern meditation and wisdom starts with breathing but it doesn’t have to be complicated, too scientific or philosophical, it is really easy to do.”

Pay attention to your standing and sitting posture

“I ask people to take some time out, pay attention to their standing and sitting posture and simply use their nose to breath in and out for a couple of minutes. Experiment and see how it makes you feel. If you are suffering from anxiety or anger – does it start to make you feel differently?”

“You don’t need to focus on how deeply you are breathing, you just need to trust your body and it will find a rhythm. Don’t force it, if you force anything you create resistance and that is not what we are trying to do. Keep your lips together and the rest of your body knows what to do. You will find your heartbeat is calmer and it is easier to focus. It will start to ease the pressure.”

Don’t force yourself to change your habits overnight

“I usually say, don’t force yourself to change your habits overnight. Be kind to yourself and give your body time to naturally change. Use your nose to breathe in and out whenever your remember and leave the rest to your body.”

“Nowadays people’s lives are very busy, they are rushing around and feeling pushed out of balance. I don’t want people to make a new ‘habit’ putting pressure on themselves, alongside all the stuff they feel they have to do – like eating properly, drinking properly and exercising. If you have a rigid way of doing things there is no life in what you do, you aren’t making them yours. Correcting your breathing is the first step to connecting all aspects of your life.”

Breathe through your nose

“Using your nose to breathe is totally natural, it is what babies do. But a lot of people just use their mouths to breath in and out and this hyperventilates the body. Think about when you breath in and out. When you laugh you breathe out forcing stale air out which increases the lungs capacity and the oxygen level in the blood.  When you cry your body tries to mainly breathe in but the airways between the nose and lungs become tight, decreasing the oxygen level in the blood which affects the whole body. You breathe out when you solve a problem.”

“Breathing in and out through your nose works with your mind and body. It can help with anxiety, insomnia, stress, anger, negativity and calms a busy mind. Breathing problems are not always the cause of difficulties but they are always there in the background.”

Trust your body

“Trust your body.  Depending on your activity the depth and speed of your breathing changes. For example, if you are walking up a hill you will breathe faster and shallower but you don’t need to do that if you are sitting and relaxing.”

Saied says he often asks clients to get in the habit of breathing through their noses by putting a piece of tape under their noses and sticking their top and lower lips shut.

“You can do it when you are at home, no phone calls to make. It is simple. Just do it for a few hours for a few days.”

“Or fill your mouth with water when going for a short walk.  You can’t use your mouth to breath then. When you get to the other side of the park just spit the water out, rather than swallow it, as it is more of a concious action. It reminds you why you are doing it.”

He says many of his clients complicate their lives by trying too hard to be happy, with a big tick list of things to do to manifest their dreams. They get frustrated when it doesn’t seem to be working. But simply by getting their breathing back on track can help clarify things and help them move forward. They become more relaxed and calm before looking at what they really want to do with their lives.

“Not breathing properly is like having a beautiful car that could take you anywhere but it has run out of petrol or has a puncture,” says Saied who has studied Chinese, osteopathic and naturopathic medicines.”

Saied can be contacted at

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Whilst WYLDE MOON consults with experts, no advice should replace that of your registered doctor. As such, the information we publish is for information purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your qualified healthcare provider for any medical conditions, and never disregard professional medical advice because of information you have read from WYLDE MOON.

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