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Breathing Techniques to Stay Mindful at Work

Breathing Techniques to Stay Mindful at Work

Breathing is a powerful tool. From relieving stress to improving lung health, breathing can have many positive health and emotional benefits for those who devote time to focusing on it and making it part of their daily practice. Getting into the habit of mindful breathing can be positive for anyone. As more people take on remote work or deal with the strain the pandemic has put on the workday, breathing can help negate feelings of burnout, stress, and anxiety that may arise while working.

So next time you start to feel anxious or stressed during the workday, put on comfortable clothes and focus on your breathing to help expel some of that negative energy from your body.

People who practice yoga and mindfulness at work are less stressed than their peers. More and more people are seeing these benefits and following suit and the number of people practicing yoga in the workplace has jumped by almost 10 percent in the past few years! If you don't have the time or space for yoga at work, simply breathing can also help people feel more grounded and centered during the workday, which can improve both focus and productivity. But as an added bonus, breathing can also help improve posture which, in turn, can reduce the back pain or muscle tension that may come with a repetitive office job.

Try these simple breathing techniques that can help manage negative feelings that arise during your workday.

Box Breathing: People in high-stress situations like nursing or even the Navy use box breathing. In this method, you sit comfortably in your desk chair and take slow, steady breaths. You should inhale, hold your breath and then exhale in equal time — four seconds is recommended.

Sitali Breathing: This technique involves curling your tongue into a “taco” shape to experience the cool feeling of air coming into your body. The cool air can help calm people who are feeling agitated. To do this, stick your tongue out and curl the sides up, inhale through your tongue to focus on the cool air, exhale through your nose and then repeat.

Lion’s Breath: The lion’s breath breathing method can help calm the body down while also being a good exercise for those with asthma or lung conditions. To practice this method, inhale slowly through your nose, then stick out your tongue and exhale forcefully while making a “ha” sound.

Here is inspiration for a week's worth of mindfulness practices for your workweek!

  • Monday: Meditate for 10 minutes.
  • Tuesday: Practice box breathing if stressed feelings arise.
  • Wednesday: Stretch for five minutes every other hour.
  • Thursday: Practice yoga or do breathing exercises.
  • Friday: Do a short, energizing yoga flow.

By Emily Gibson

Emily is a content creator from Austin, Texas, who loves camping, listening to music and petting her dog.

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