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1-Minute private technique kills business stress

This 4-step, on-the-spot stress management technique is being used—right this minute, as you are reading this—by millions of healthcare, business, sports, entertainment, teaching, and homemaker professionals.  It works for every age and level of health.  

It will work for you too!



Sit or stand, feet flat on the floor, hands at your sides.  (Crossed arms, legs, ankles, and wrists constrain your blood and oxygen flow.)  Close your mouth.  Take a slow deep breath in through your nose.


Direct the air you inhale into the bottom part of your lungs so your stomach sticks out instead of your chest (opposite of your usual top-of-the-lung breathing).


Now—before exhaling—shift the air to the top part of your lungs so that your stomach is in and your chest is out.  Hold it there a few seconds, then loosen your jaw and exhale through your mouth in a slow steady stream so you can hear yourself.  Listen to your airflow.  The goal is to eliminate or smooth out any nervous-sounding “hitches” in your exhale.  The next step will help you do that.  


When you think you’ve breathed out all the air, don’t believe it!  Give an extra little push or two at the end of your exhale.  It’s these extra exhale pushes that do the trick, that will make this exercise work for you.  Then close your mouth and repeat the process until you hear yourself exhale smoothly and evenly, until no nervous little airflow “hitches” remain.


Go slowly at first, the same way you would begin any new exercise.  If you experience slight dizziness or excessive coughing (or see smoke if you are a smoker!), don’t be alarmed.  Simply return to your “normal” way of breathing.  Such signals (dizziness, coughing, the appearance of smoke) indicate you could probably benefit even more than most people by mastering this mother of all self-management/self-control methods.  Work at it!

Practice.  You’ll soon be taking deep breaths as most athletes and performers do—on the spot in stressful situations, and routinely for ongoing good health—without being noticed!

Every deep breath you take increases blood flow to relax your muscles, boosts oxygen supply to your brain to help you be more alert . . . and soothes your neurological system.


Every deep breath you take increases your personal productivity by increasing your mental focus on the present moment, on what is right in front of you.  After all, along with your pulse and your heartbeat, your breathing is the most immediate happening in your entire life.

And, remember, if you can train yourself to take deep breaths in response to stressful situations, you will be responding instead of reacting.  When you can prevent yourself from reacting, you eliminate all risk of over-reacting.

Just as flames die without oxygen, so will your ability to focus productively on the present moment die out when your “normal” way of breathing fails to deliver enough blood-flow to your muscles and enough oxygen to your brain.  When you use the 4 steps shown above, you keep your mind and body tuned into the present moment . . . and since the present moment is all we really have in life:

The secret of life . . . is breath!

# # #


This article was published in HealthWize magazine.  Variations appear in Hal’s books, DOCTOR BUSINESS (for physicians) and DOCTOR SHOPPING (for consumers).  It is the foundation for stress management techniques taught by the author to more than 20,000 business and healthcare professionals, and entrepreneurs.

# # #


Thanks for visiting. Go for your goals! God Bless You!

“The price of freedom is eternal vigilance!” [Thomas Jefferson] 

Make today a GREAT day for someone! 

31 comments so far


  1. Executive Resume Writeron 05 Jun 2009 at 10:07 pm

    Hi Hal~

    Thanks for the reminder. It’s easy to get so busy during the day that we actually forget to stop and breath deeply. These simple steps are quick and easy.

    I’m breathing deeper as I type this. 🙂


    Thank YOU, Erin, for your comment and for your visit. I truly appreciate that you took the time and trouble to do both. Thanks. Hal

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