If you’ve ever watched anyone meditate or participated in any meditation practice, you know that the focus on the breath is one of the techniques that people use to calm their minds and center their well being. But all too often, those same practices are forgotten outside of classes—or never learned by the rest of us—and that’s too bad. The breath and the control of the breath hold power to help us gain control of life’s roller coaster of emotions as well as transform the times when anxiety tends to take over.
Focused control of the breath is an ancient practice. It involves using some parts of the body, such as the abdomen, to draw the breath in in particular ways; it also uses counting or other repetitive techniques. How can those help you, and which ones should you try? This graphic offers a good place to start.