Before your next important meeting, breathe.
We’ve all been there. You have an important meeting scheduled in advance, and you think to yourself, ‘no big deal, I’ve got this’. Fast-forward to 30 minutes before the meeting and all of a sudden you are experiencing discomfort. Palms sweating, heart racing, stomach churning, and you’re beginning to second guess yourself.
At this point, you’ve got two options. One, you can continue to replay the what-if’s in your head, rehearse your meeting agenda, and allow your fight or flight responses to take over. Or, you can breathe. Yes, just breathe. While a little extra preparation and rehearsal couldn’t hurt anything, breathing is more likely to help.
By pausing a moment to take a few conscious, deep inhales and exhales, you’ll send signals to your brain telling it that all is well. This adjusts our nervous system responses from fight or flight, back to feeling calm and collected.
Breathing is also a form mindfulness, which brings us into the present moment to provide relief from any stressful thought patterns. Dedicate a few extra minutes to mindful breathing, and you’ll feel closer to your initial ‘no big deal, I’ve got this’ attitude.
Here are some other convenient (and beneficial!) points throughout your day to remember to breathe:
- While you’re waiting for your car to warm up/cool down before driving
- Walking to and from the breakroom or bathroom
- Before responding to a text or email that may have upset you
- As you mentally prepare for a phone call
- While you wait (in line, for technology to load, etc.)
For more unique ideas for the workplace or tips to help inspire your workforce contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Feel free to comment below with any other ideas you may have!