breath streaming out of mouth into sky Deep breathing improves oxygen delivery to your brain and body, which improves mental focus and physical energy. It also triggers the release of endorphins, which generate feelings of contentment and relieve stress and anxiety.

Activity: Take a few minutes to practice deep, slow breathing. You may time your inhalations and exhalations to one of these images, or simply become turn your attention to your breath and focus on inhaling for a count of 3 and exhaling for a count of 3. 

Benefits: deep breathing has been shown to:

  • Increase relaxation and calm
  • Decrease stress, tension and anxiety
  • Improve mental and physical functioning

If you’d like to dramatically increase your likelihood of following through on this activity, answer these questions in writing or out loud to another person.

  • How and when will you do this activity?
  • What might get in the way—and how will you address these obstacles?
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