“In each of us are places where we have never gone. Only by pressing the limits do you ever find them.”

-Joyce Brothers

This is the beginning of week three. Hopefully, taking it one day at a time, planning, and re-evaluating goals and directions, has motivated your desire to continue with your decision. Today, start with the following deep breathing exercise. Before you begin, erase any stressors for the day and visually put yourself in a place that is warm, relaxing and inviting.

Deep Breath

Learning to breathe deeply is the first step in learning to relax. You will learn to use a deep diaphragmatic breathing technique as an important core relaxation exercise and craving prevention method.

Place one hand just below the rib cage (above the stomach). Take a deep breath. As you inhale, notice the movement of your hand. Did it move in or out? If you breathed properly, your hand moved out.

The deep, full breath begins with the diaphragm moving down and the lowest part of the lungs filling with air; the middle pan fills; then the chest expands, and finally the upper pan of the lungs fill with air.
In breathing for relaxation, breathe through the nose and exhale through your mouth, feeling warm air leave the body.

Inhale through your nose, hold for 10 seconds – - feel the tension in your throat and chest. Exhale through your mouth with a slight sign; feel the sigh of relief release tension.

The quietest time of breath is between exhalation and inhalation. Learning to feel this stillness can help you relax. As you exhale with a slight sigh, feel all the tension leave your body and melt away. Try to recall this quiet time when feeling stressed.