learn how this breathing exercise (designed by dr stephen porges – author of the the polyvagal theory) helps you manage anxiety by regulating your body. it can leave you lashing out with rage and anger or having to leave your immediate environment as everything swirls into an uncomfortable mix of overwhelm. and life goes on … until the next stressful event occurs – or the stress you’re experiencing in your life is all pervasive and as a result is keeping your body on high alert even when there is no ‘triggering’ incident for you to feel anxious. your brain is protecting you in a way that’s kept mammals safe from the earliest of times – it’s an automatic response emanating from the oldest part of your brain – often called the reptilian brain.
to change your physiological state so you have a more positive, regulated and appropriate response dr porges suggests: manipulating your breath. and these body responses are creating a physiological state that supports the feeling of anxiety. so learning how to manage anxiety in the moment is an important skill to master as your ‘logical brain’ isn’t able to support you in the way it normally does. as you say each number, visualise blowing out the candles in a slow and steady exhale. this helps ‘distract’ you from the source of anxiety so you focus more on your breathing and blowing out the candles instead.
for those of you newer to the vagus nerve, here are some interesting facts – it is a cranial nerve (number 10 of 12 cranial nerves, in fact) that originates in the medulla, and the name ‘vagus’ can be translated as ‘wandering’. the vagus nerve is a primary component of the parasympathetic branch (“rest and digest”) of our autonomic nervous system, as opposed to the sympathetic branch (“fight or flight”). essentially, it is proposed that there are two vagal systems that can behave differently: (i) a more primitive path that is shared with reptiles and amphibia which leads to fainting, freezing, or ‘playing dead’ when threatened so as to conserve metabolic resources; and (ii) a more evolved branch unique to mammals that is involved in self-soothing and calming behaviors in stressful situations. well, earlier in this piece, i mentioned the term ‘vagal tone,’ which is defined as vagus nerve activity. it has become quite popular as a novel way to measure stress vulnerability and can be measured in various ways.
and while we don’t have much control over most of our autonomic nervous system functions, the breath is one way to access the vagus nerve and thus our ‘rest and digest’ response as a means to find balance (or homeostasis) in our system. does the breath feel tense? 4. once the breath feels relaxed and comfortable, notice the movement of the body. in a gentle way, try to actively expand the abdomen on the inhale and contract the abdomen on the exhale to support the natural movement of the diaphragm and experience the pleasure of giving yourself a full, relaxed breath. valerie has always been a believer in staying active and yoga is the perfect marriage of her work in mental health and her love of movement and anatomy.
gently and lightly inhaling through the nose, belly expanding, exhaling through the mouth belly relaxing. as you inhale through the nose create dr porgal’s breathing technique: use this technique to ‘trick’ yourself into slowing down your breathing. porges suggests exhaling slowly by diaphragmatic breathing (also referred to as “slow abdominal breathing”) is something you can do anytime and anywhere to instantly stimulate, 4 7 8 breathing vagus nerve, 4 7 8 breathing vagus nerve, polyvagal theory, vagus nerve breathing exercises, vagus nerve: tapping.
breathe more slowly (aim for six breaths per minute). breathe more deeply, from the belly. think about expanding your abdomen and widening your to practice deep breathing, inhale through your nose and exhale through your mouth. remember to: breathe more slowly. breathe more deeply, from the belly. the breathing techniques used in contact include, but are not restricted to, slowing down respiration cycles, shifting to longer exhalations, low vagal tone symptoms, vagus nerve breathing anxiety, vagal breathing youtube, vagal breathing benefits, vagus nerve stimulation, vagus nerve exercises for sleep, how to heal the vagus nerve naturally, vagus nerve exercises for digestion, vagus nerve reset, vagus nerve stimulation yoga.
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