Calming Before The Storm by Jenny Lehman

March 30th, 2021

Posted by: Dr. Justin D'Arienzo, Psy.D., ABPP

Calming Before the Storm

Calming Before The Storm by Jenny Lehman, LCSW

In this video, Jenny Lehman will talk about how to stay calm during the storm. We all have a pattern that we use

to calm ourselves even when we feel something we do not want to feel. For

example, we might watch Netflix, go on our phone, go shopping, etc. These behaviors feed us in

a small way for a short time. In the long run, these behaviors can have a

very damaging effect on our mental health. The current world climate feels unpredictable. If it

makes you feel anxious, it might make you feel inclined to do one of the behaviors previously

mentioned. Maybe it used to work, and now you notice that it does not work as well.

How do we calm ourselves when a negative feeling comes up? One effective method when

conducted regularly is engaging in belly breathing. Belly breathing is a deep breath that expands

your diaphragm. This breathing has an impact on your vagus nerve. Activating this nerve is

essentially like pressing a calming button on our nervous system. The belly breath is powerful if

used consistently. To conduct a belly breath, put your hand on your chest and your stomach.

When you inhale, do not move your shoulders. Bring your breath in through your nose. When

you inhale, your hand is going to move a little bit. Take about 30 or 40 seconds periodically

throughout the day to conduct this belly breath. You should start to see a difference in your

nervous system’s response. It only gets better the more you belly breathe. We never

make good decisions when we are coming from a place of fear. Pay attention to staying balanced

so that you can make logical decisions.

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