Wedding Tips

I write Wedding Tips, on topics from communication skills to relaxation techniques,
to support you in having a stress-free Wedding Celebration.

Wedding Tip #7: A Breathing Tip to Reduce Stress

Planning a wedding can easily bring stress. Stress occurs when things don’t go the way we’ve planned or we are concerned that they won’t. We can consciously use breathing techniques to alleviate stress. We can alter our physiology, outlook and attitude by changing the depth, rhythm and rate of our breathing. A key function of breathing is to ensure that you maintain a healthy store of carbon dioxide which is a natural tranquilizer. The basic rule of breathing is: slowing down and prolonging the out-breath will calm and sedate you, and prolonging the in-breath will alert or stimulate you.

Your breath is a powerful force that can be used to control the energy of your emotions. Think about it — when encountering something of real beauty, we often gasp, and hold our breath. Then we begin to take shallow breaths and perhaps say something like: “that’s so lovely, it takes my breath away.” When we hear something that disturbs or upsets us, we again tense up and hold our breath and our breathing becomes very shallow. This shallow breathing may result in rapid breathing and hyperventilation. This may cause headaches, anxiety, stress, or high blood pressure.

You can reduce stress considerably by slowing down the physiology of the body with conscious breathing. Many breathing techniques have been clinically proven to not only relax your body but also calm your mind. One great way to start is by counting your breaths. Begin by getting very still and breathe slowly in and out only through your mouth. On your first inhalation silently say to yourself “one.” On your exhalation silently say to yourself “two.” On the next inhalation silently say to yourself “three.” On the next exhalation silently say to yourself “four.” Repeat this for several minutes. If you lose track of your counting simply start over. This is a surprisingly effective technique that may reduce symptoms caused by anxiety and stress. Why not give it a try now?