Managing Stress & Anxiety With SKY Breathing
With so much going on in the news recently, it would be no surprise if your stress and anxiety levels have reached new highs.
It can be incredibly difficult to switch off from global events these days, with social media making current affairs all too easy to tap into whenever we get the urge… and doomscrolling appears to be on the rise, increasing anxiety levels even more.
Of course, the majority of people will likely feel anxious and stressed occasionally, but if you find that it’s having a big impact on your life, there are various ways in which you can help ease your symptoms and build resilience, no matter what’s going on in the world.
Talking your feelings through to a friend or family member, or even a professional counsellor or your GP can help you make sense of them and give you coping mechanisms to deal with your symptoms. Exercise is also a wonderful tonic and you can really help yourself to relax by hitting the gym, going for a walk or heading out for a run.
Sleep is also hugely important and if you’re struggling with insomnia at the moment, taking steps to address this can help you get your anxiety under control, making you feel more confident and self-assured, and giving you the energy you need to tackle the day ahead.
Eating healthily and practising a regular self-care routine is yet another way to help you ease your anxiety symptoms - and, if you’re wondering what to include in your routine, what about trying out SKY breathing and see if the techniques help you restore balance to your life.
How can SKY breathing help?
Meditative techniques like the SKY breathing method can be especially effective when treating mental health conditions like anxiety, depression, stress and so on.
It’s a technique that involves cyclical controlled breathing and meditation, usually for around half an hour and featuring four distinct yogic breathing stages.
The innate ability of the breath is used to trigger an automatic quieting of the mind, resulting in a deep experience of profound relaxation, no matter if you’ve just started meditation or have long been a practitioner.
It has its roots in traditional yoga and has been studied over the years for the effect it can have on addiction, PTSD, anxiety and depression - and these effects can even be felt via online sessions, so it can be learnt remotely, as well.
Recent research from the University of Yale looked into the effects of various interventions on anxiety, depression and suicide among university students and found that SKY breathing had the biggest impact across six outcomes - depression, mental health, stress, mindfulness, social connectedness and positive effect.
One possible explanation for its effectiveness across a range of different areas is that it involves a comprehensive and multi-component curriculum, bringing together positive psychology, yoga, breathing and meditation, and community service.
Further studies have found that modulating respiration in particular has links to improvements in neuro-cognitive function, deficits of which are often observed in mental health conditions. Breathing techniques can also drive improvements in emotional control and psychological wellbeing, it has previously been found.
How can The Mindful Therapist help?
If you’re feeling overwhelmed at the moment with everything going on, just remember that you’re not alone and there is a lot of help out there if you need it.
I use SKY breath meditation as part of a comprehensive treatment plan, which includes elements from hypnotherapy and mindfulness-based therapies, as well as CBT, to help my clients overcome the difficulties they’re experiencing.
A session lasts around 35 minutes, during which you’ll complete your first practice and have the tools to continue practising at home. You’re also supported with tutorial videos and a recording to practise each day. If you’d like to find out more about the technique and its benefits, get in touch with me today.