With so much going on in the world each day, just watching the news can leave the average person feeling a bit stressed. From controversial political topics to threats of severe weather, most of us can connect to world events personally – and those burdens can feel heavy. Now that COVID-19 has dominated most headlines and even our social media outlets, there’s no avoiding the nerve-racking topic, even when you feel like you need a mental reprieve.
Yes, we need to stay informed. It’s absolutely essential to be up-to-date on the latest information from the CDC as well as state officials. At the same time, it can feel overwhelming. At The Hemp Doctor, we care about you, and we want to help you find healthy ways to navigate through this challenging crisis so you can emerge from it well-informed, but also healthy. We don’t encourage ignoring the information because the knowledge, especially during a pandemic, will help keep you safe. However, we do encourage striking a healthy balance whenever possible.
Take a Break, Take a Breath
For starters, when you can, designate a certain time of the day to check your preferred news outlets. Perhaps check the news briefly in the morning and again briefly at night, and that’s all. If you fear that you may miss breaking news, consider turning on “breaking news” alerts on your cell phone through your news outlet of choice. Otherwise, spend the rest of your day managing the many other responsibilities you have, which inevitably will keep you busy.
Throughout the day, we recommend taking a few moments to yourself to gather your thoughts and clear your mind. This short break can be a mere 3-5 minutes but, if used correctly, it can help you lighten your emotional burdens and enhance your ability to cope with life’s stressors. Here are two incredibly short and easy breathing techniques you can pencil in a couple of times a day that will work wonders on your emotional coping abilities.
Before we get started, we know that you may be unsure about the simplistic idea of breathing to reduce stress, because breathing comes so naturally. You might be wondering if any breathing technique can be effective in emotional management. We understand that skepticism, but insist you give it a try anyway. We only share information backed by science and research, and the results are conclusive: Breathing to reduce stress works!
Here’s the thing about just about every breathing exercise: It works when you truly engage in it and shift all of your focus to your breathing during the entire exercise. This can be difficult, but you can do it and it’s worth the effort. Let’s get started!
Stress-Eliminating Breathing Technique #1: Deep Breathing
Again, this sounds incredibly simple, but dedicate a few minutes to focus on the activity and watch how quickly you reap the benefits. Here are step-by-step directions to complete this breathing exercise properly:
- Find a comfortable place to lay down.
- Put a pillow under your head for support.
- Bend your knees.
- Place one hand on your stomach below your ribcage, near your belly button.
- Breathe in deeply through your nose, noticing your hand rising as your belly fills with fresh, clean air.
- Breathe out somewhat forcefully through your mouth, like you’re trying to blow out a candle. Release all of the air thoroughly. Your hand should have lowered to its original position as the air is eliminated from the lungs.
- Repeat three times.
Note: If you prefer sitting up, this technique can be modified to accommodate it. Simply begin by sitting up comfortably in a chair instead of laying down.
If you engage fully in this breathing exercise, you may feel slightly uncomfortable at first. Be patient with yourself, and take a break if you feel lightheaded. This is common when you begin deep breathing, and it’s temporary. As you keep practicing, it will feel more natural and you will feel the relaxing benefits more promptly.
Stress-Eliminating Breathing Technique #2: 4-7-8 Breathing
Not only is this technique incredibly easy, but the directions are also in the name of it! Once you give it a try, it won’t be easy to forget. Here’s the simple, yet effective technique, step-by-step:
- Find a comfortable place to sit or lay down.
- Take a deep breath in, then push out all of the air in your lungs.
- Breathing from your nose, quietly inhale for four counts.
- Remain still, and hold your breath for seven counts.
- Exhaling from your mouth, release the breath forcefully for eight counts.
- Repeat this routine up to four times.
Pretty easy, right? Inhale for four, hold for seven, exhale for eight. One cycle takes only nineteen seconds! You can surely make time to give this a try. And, if you give it a try and it feels challenging, you can easily modify it by inhaling for two counts, holding for three and a half counts, and exhaling for four counts.
Both of these breathing techniques are quite simple, but they have lasting emotional benefits if you incorporate them into your daily routine. So do yourself a favor and breathe! We believe in you, and we know your mind and body will thank you.
The Hemp Doctor: A Breath of Fresh Air
At The Hemp Doctor, America’s Premier Hemp & CBD Dispensary, we believe wellness doesn’t have to be complicated. We offer dozens of top-notch, all-natural products in our inventory that prove just that! Our commitment to supporting your overall emotional and physical health guides us each day. That’s why we offer educational materials in addition to the nation’s best CBD and hemp products. We want you to have a true wellness advocate, not just a nameless, faceless online retailer.
Our premier products, just like the techniques listed above, are a breath of fresh air to our loyal customers because they are guaranteed safe, effective, and non-addictive. We make sure that shopping for a wellness product doesn’t have to be a time-consuming chore. Our strict, detail-oriented processes – from organically growing the healthiest hemp plants to scientifically-advanced extraction and purification – separate us from our competitors. That’s why The Hemp Doctor continues to be consumers’ top choice across the nation for all things CBD and hemp.