When we get stressed our breathing becomes very shallow and more rapid.
To change this, begin by noticing each in and out breath. Just watching the flow of the breath will bring you back into the present.
When you are ready, sit or lie down comfortably, hands relaxed, eyes closed. Spend a few minutes settling your body, noticing any tight spots and letting go with each out breath.
Now bring your focus to your breathing, feeling the movement of your chest as you breathe in and out. Silently repeat with each breath, “ In 1 2 3 4 Out 1 2 3 4 ”
Keep watching your breath. If your mind starts to drift, just come back to the breath and start counting again. This method also works very well for getting to sleep.
As your breath starts to get deeper & slow down, you can add a pause between each in and out breath. Count “ Pause 1 2 ” up to 3 4.
When you get really comfortable with this way of breathing, you can increase the count up to 8, as long as this does not cause any discomfort or tension.
Do this for a few minutes to start with and then increase the length of time as you become more experienced .
When you are ready to end the meditation, take a deep breath and let it go, open your eyes, sit still for a while, give thanks and then move gently & slowly back into your day.