Sometimes you get so busy that you almost forget to breathe. But its important – I would go so far as to say it is a life saver. Deep breathing is a quick and easy method to get you focused and relieve anxiety.

5 simple steps:

It is better to set aside a few minutes but even three repetitions may be enough to calm you down. This can be done at work or even at home with a neighbor trying to learn the ukulele. However, get into as an anxious free environment as possible.
  1. Imagine a box in front of you.
  2. On the first side breathe in through your nose for 2 seconds.
  3. Hold it for 2 seconds on the next side.
  4. Then breathe out with your mouth for two seconds.
  5. Wait another two seconds on the 4th side and repeat at least three times, preferably for a few minutes.

3 Tips:

  • If helpful, repeat a mantra. It can be “vine, vidi, vici”, “I came, I saw, I conquered”. Whatever calms your anxiety, and inspires. If there are 2 or 4 words you can get into a rhythm on the sides box, all the better.
  • You do want to be in a place that you do not feel awkward if someone hears you repeatedly breathing heavily.
  • Do not judge it too hastily if you are not trying it in the right environment (quiet, good lighting, comfy chair, etc.)

All non profit employees should be happy and productive – you should enjoy the work that is meaningful to you and the world and make the most of the time you put into it. There will be high pressure times, but every day should not feel like an all-nighter in college before finals, cramming everything together last minute. Good planning is key, but this is a quick method that you can use no matter what of preventing that. Enjoy!

Image from Shawn Rossi.