4 Part Breathing

by elizabethbrantley

This is a technique that I find incredibly useful in a myriad of different situations. I use it on a daily basis when I am faced with a stressful situation, when I have to make a big decision, waiting in line, driving through traffic and just about every night to calm my mind to go to sleep. In fact, the other night when I was doing it, Drew turned over and said, “Are you doing a Breathing Exercise?” He caught me! But of course it doesn’t matter who knows or notices. It is subtle enough that you can do it anywhere, but important enough to not matter at all who sees.

Here is how to practice 4 – Part Breathing. 

1. Inhale deeply s-l-o-w-l-y counting to four (in your head). (This really is to the point where you can’t take in any more air.)

2. Hold your breathe and count to four (again very, very slowly).

3. Exhale to the slow count of four. (To the point you cannot exhale any more.)

4. Hold your breathe and count to four.

5. Repeat

(I tend to do this about 6 times in a row. This will always calm me down and bring much peace).


If I have learned anything this past year it is the importance of taking deep breaths, and the ability to change our state by focusing and changing our breathing! I hope you find this useful too!