There are times when our emotional reactions are heightened and we may not be able to seek the solace of a trusted friend or have our journal handy. When circumstances like time and location impede you from accessing your chosen source to regroup, another valuable skill to learn can be breathing techniques. Learning to control the physical element of our body can help us better control the emotional side.
Believe it or not, your physical body is directly connected to your emotions. In fact, masters of meditative techniques say that they can quickly change their emotional state by focusing on their breathing. Perhaps meditation isn’t your thing, but that doesn’t mean you can’t learn how to use your breathing to better deal with advancing your career.
For example, slow steady breathes that completely fill your lungs and then are slowly released will actually slow down your heart rate, which in turn will slow blood flow and bring down your sense of frustration or anger. In contrast, do you ever need to work yourself up for an emotional scene? The opposite practice will speed up your blood flow, heart rate, and send your body into preparations to escape or defend as it feels threatened. Meditation, yoga, and some aerobic training classes can help you learn and develop these skills, but so can you natural awareness of what is happening in your body during heightened emotional states. Pay attention the next time you feel elated, overwhelmed, anxious, fearful, angry, etc. That just might be the best way to tap into those emotions on a whim in the future and to control them when they start to surface at inopportune times.