How to Breathe Properly During Meditation. Meditation, the technique of focusing the mind while deepening the breath, is a popular practice for people who suffer from stress or anxiety. Successful meditation depends entirely upon concentration and the elimination of external distractions. Learning to breathe properly during meditation is an essential step in attaining the beneficial effects of meditation, which include tranquility, peace, restfulness and reduction of stress.
Prepare Yourself to Meditate
Change into comfortable clothing that does not restrict your movement or your ability to breathe.
Light your candles or burn your incense (or both). Many adherents of meditation hold that the presence of elemental fire heightens the efficacy of your meditation session.
Seat yourself on the floor, or sit upright in a straight-backed chair that promotes proper posture. Sitting on the floor is recommended by most meditation experts, but the most important thing is to keep your back straight. Feel free to use a small pillow to aid your comfort.
Close your eyes. Let any stray thoughts in your mind trickle to their natural end. Then, concentrate on nothingness.
Practice Proper Breathing During Meditation
Standardize your breathing technique. During meditation, some people inhale and exhale through their nose, some inhale through their nose and use their mouth to exhale and some both inhale and exhale through the mouth. Choose whichever you prefer, but stick to it with every breath you take.
Regulate your breathing. Breathe at consistent intervals, establishing a rhythm. With practice, this rhythm should become second nature to you.
Visualize if you're having trouble. BellaOnline's Buddhist meditation pages can suggest some helpful techniques, should you need help learning to breathe properly during meditation (see Resources below).
Use a mantra or a personalized word or phrase that you chant during your meditation sessions to help you focus properly.
Practice daily. As with most anything, meditation gets easier the more you do it. Also, its psychological and health benefits are only attained through regular usage.
Sign up for professional instruction in meditation if you've identified a particular style you're interested in. Depending on the style, courses or retreats range from free of charge to very expensive.
Meditation is best used as a relaxation tool, not as primary treatment of a stress-related medical condition like high blood pressure or ulcers. Consult a doctor if you have or suspect you have a condition of that nature.