Anxious, Bored, or Irritable? Just Breathe

Today I am grateful for a game of Phase 10 and laughter shared with my husband and son, and for new episodes of "Grace and Frankie" to enjoy and bring more laughter.

Laughter releases endorphins and increases oxygen flow. It releases stress, which also helps keep our immune systems stronger. What are your go-to laughter sources?  Keep tapping into them.

Like laughter, meditation and mindful breathing can calm us down and release tension and anxiety that may have accumulated. It's safe to say that we have all accumulated tension and anxiety in the midst of this pandemic.

It can look different in each of us. Some people become anxious, worried, and quite distracted. Some flit from one activity to another, but still feel bored. Nothing seems to work to take their mind off the worries and concerns.

And then some, like me, get irritable. I am more likely to avoid my emotions and become even more of a doer than I usually am. I don't run out of things to do, I run out of time. Irritability and exhaustion set in. I become "itchy, scratchy" or "itchy, bitchy, twitchy" as my friend Jill says.

This is a really challenging time for all of us in shared ways, and in ways unique to our own personalities and dispositions. It becomes even more important to be able to pause and return to the calm place of paying attention to our breathing. It is where we can become grounded again and lessen the stress and anxiety.

Lessening it, even for a few minutes, is very beneficial. Having practices, exercises, and habits to help us is necessary. Especially at times like this when routine and focus are harder to come by.

Here are a couple of links that you may find informative and that may assist you with some practices to just breathe . . .

Anxiety is Also Contagious. Here's How to Calm Down-from
It includes a simple 5-minute guided breathing meditation.

Click here for a visual to help encourage mindful breathing.

There is so much coming at us on the conscious level of this pandemic. Conscious breathing becomes a protector, helping us temper all the negative emotions with some peace and strength for a few moments. It's worth a try.