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Online Stress Management Workshop

-What is Stress?
-Fight or Flight
-Stress Response
-What is Stressful to You?
-Stress is Normal in Life
-Not All Stress is Bad
-What Leads to Stress?
-How Stress Affects Us
-Vulnerability to Stress
   (self evaluation)

-Why We Stress Out
-Our Perceptions of Stress
-Stress Warning Signs
-Your Warning Signs
-Reducing Stress
-Find Support
-Change Your Attitude
-Be Realistic
-Get Organized
-Take "Me" Time
-Take Care of Yourself
-Learn to Say "No"
-Get Regular Exercise
-Find a Hobby
-Slow Down
-Laugh, Use Humor
-Learn to Relax
-Relaxation Exercises
-Deep Breathing
-List of Suggestions to Print
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Online Stress Management Workshop

Relaxation Exercise: Deep Breathing

When we feel stressed, it is common for our rate of breathing to increase. We also tend to breath in a shallow manner, more highly in our chest. A deep breathing exercise allows us to take fuller, slower breaths that reflect a true relaxed state.

Deep Breath. Slowly take a deep breath. Hold it for a count of four. Then, gently let it all out, letting tensions go as you exhale. Our breathing becomes shallow as we become tense. A deep breath can help more oxygen enter our system, literally breathing more life into ourselves.

Breathing Tensions Away. Become aware of your feet and legs. As you take in a slow, deep breath, imagine pulling all the tensions in them up into your lungs and expelling these tensions as you gently exhale. Then, with a second deep breath, breathe all the tensions in your trunk, hands and arms and expel them with a gentle exhalation. Then, finish off by collecting all those in your shoulders, neck, and head. With practice, you might be able to collect tensions in your entire body in one deep inhalation and expel them. If you have special tensions in one particular spot, devote one full breath to that spot.

Equalized Breathing. Breathe in to a count of four and out to a count of four ("thousand 1, thousand 2, thousand 3, thousand 4"). Do that four or five times. With tenseness, our breathing can become irregular. Slowing down and equalizing our inhalations and exhalations is calming.

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This page was last updated on May 23, 2010

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