01 Nov Managing strong emotions in relationships with abdominal breathing
Relationships evoke strong emotions: the good and the bad.
Here’s a simple strategy for self-soothing when your relationship is causing stress, anxiety, frustration, anger, or any other strong emotional reaction.
It won’t take the emotion away, but it will allow you to acknowledge it and respond to it in healthier ways.
Use it before you react. It’s a take anywhere strategy and it’s free.
Begin by sitting comfortably with your hands rested on your lower abdomen
Allow yourself to “check in” with your normal breathing. Observe its pace, depth, and the way your body feels as your chest rises and falls
Inhale into your lower lungs – your abdomen will expand and your hands will rise
Continue inhaling and now focus on filling your upper lungs – your chest and shoulders will rise
Exhale from your lower lungs first – your abdomen will relax and fall
Continue exhaling and now focus on emptying your upper lungs – your chest and shoulders will relax and fall
Once you become familiar with this breathing sequence, focus on inhaling through your nose and exhaling through your open mouth if that’s comfortable
Practice this breathing sequence 2-3 times at one sitting only, and repeat as many times as you like throughout each day
Also use abdominal breathing as a “front line” response to any immediate emotional distress, to pause and regroup before responding to challenging personal or relationship situations.
Want to get better at managing your own emotional and relationship health? Contact Pamela to discuss your own unique needs. I love helping people and relationships thrive.