Breathing Exercises To Relieve Stress: Why 5 Minutes A Day Could Change Your Life

By Amanda Linnell
Studio Red Wellness founder Vicky Cullinane shares her tips for minimising overwhelm.

Welcome to Change Your Life In Your Lunchtime, our new four-part series on how to minimise anxiety and overwhelm, from the power of deep breathing to meditation. In our first episode, Vicky Cullinane explains why taking five minutes a day is all you need to keep you feeling balanced and

Every year we know Christmas is coming, yet every year we find ourselves in the same stressed and slightly panicked position — there are all those work deadlines to meet (does my boss really need my budgets for next year now?), endless social events and late nights as the party season kicks into overdrive, organising family holidays, end of school concerts, late night social events (we really must catch up before Christmas!), not to mention shopping for gifts and planning the menu for the big day. It. Is. Stressful.

Of course, it’s not only at this time of the year that we can find ourselves in overwhelm. As Vicky Cullinane, who opened the Freeman’s Bay Studio Red Wellness back in 2015, has discovered, the demand for their restorative classes has doubled since Covid, as more people seek to find balance in their lives.

Thankfully, there are simple and easy ways to help you navigate the stresses of daily life. Vicky, herself, relies on a five-minute reset, which she uses every day to help balance the good times with the challenging times.

“Developing a daily practice has helped me successfully navigate my life. ”My goal is to always feel calm and in control and, ultimately, to have peace of mind. But everyone is different, some people want to improve their sleep or reduce stress. When it comes to maintaining your wellness practice the key is to have a goal; a reason, a why. This helps keep you motivated and focused. And then it’s about consistency.”

Studio Red Wellness founder Vicky Cullinane believes in the power of breathwork.
Studio Red Wellness founder Vicky Cullinane believes in the power of breathwork.

Vicky’s approach is incredibly simple.

First, move your body. Ideally, move it to a different room or, depending on your mood, go for a gentle or brisk walk which takes in climbing stairs or up a hill. “The key is to change locations,” Vicky explains. “When you move your body, you are shifting your energy out of your head and into your body. This works to connect you with your breath.”

The second step, once you are in a different space, is to sit quietly and do 10 deep belly breaths. This will work to calm you.

Once you have finished your deep breaths, allow yourself to sit in stillness and silence for five to 45 minutes.

It’s that simple.

“We’re never not thinking,” says Vicky, “but when you slow it down and create that mental space, it gives you way more control over your thoughts and, ultimately, your reactions. At the end of the day, you control your every thought and control how you respond to them.

“The key is to make it easy on yourself and this five-minute reset can be done anywhere, anytime. The feeling afterwards is incredible,” smiles Vicky. “Your head feels clear, you’re more focussed, and you really do feel an increase in energy.”

Maximising Your 5-Minute Reset

  • Consistency is key. Do it every day.
  • Find a time that works best for you. Mid-afternoon is often good to re-energise for the evening ahead.
  • Move from one space into a new space, to help create a new energy and connect with your body.
  • Find a space that is peaceful and where you will be uninterrupted.

Next week, the importance of sleep and deep rest. For more dedicated wellness videos, sign up to Studio Red Wellness.

From deep sleep to wellness routines.

Is It Possible To Improve Our Memories Or Are We Doomed To Forget As We Age? Memory is a fickle beast at the best of times. But what if you could train it?

Everything Model And Entrepreneur Jessica Clarke Does To De-Stress. The New Zealand-born, UK-based co-founder of Mother Made shares her wellness routine.

Stressed And Burnt Out, We’ve Forgotten How To Relax. Deep Rest Could Change That. It’s not sleep, nor meditation, but the effects can be as profound as a holiday.

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