Most people tend to take quick, shallow breaths (or hyperventilate) when they are feeling anxious or distressed. Unless you are in a really dangerous situation, it’s probably not necessary to breathe like this as it sends a signal to the body to prepare for danger. It can really help to get some control over our breathing when we can’t directly get control over the way we feel.

Breathe in and breathe out.

Breathe in and breathe out.

·         Take a normal breath in through your nose with your mouth closed.

·         Breathe out slowly through your nose or mouth and very slowly say (out loud or in your head) a word like, “calm” or “relax”.

·         Count to four slowly, and then take another breath.

·         Practise this a few times a day, taking 15-20 breaths like this.