Just like you can go on a run to improve your physical health, you can practice anxiety-reducing techniques to gain more well-being in your life.
This is known as developing a strong vagal tone. The vagus nerve is a part of your brain’s messaging system. It’s involved in a wide array of functions including your “rest and digest” functions as well as your “fight or flight” response.
If you’re looking to reduce anxiety, keep reading to find vagus nerve exercises that can improve your mind in no time.
Active Vagus Nerve Exercises
The vagus nerve is a part of several automatic processes in your body.
One of these is the regulation of breathing and heart rate. As such, physical exercise and deep breathing are two ways to create a strong vagal tone.
You can find different structured breathing exercises to try online. In general, any slow breathing that fills the lower part of your lungs should do the trick. Focus on filling your lungs rather than filling your belly.
It may also be helpful to incorporate daily vagus nerve exercises into your morning routine. This could include:
- Gargling water for 30 seconds after brushing your teeth
- Writing for 10 minutes in a journal about the things you’re grateful for
- Meditating while drinking coffee.
All of these things help slow your system down, resetting your stress responses while reducing anxiety.
If you’re looking for a quick-fix type of exercise, try forced laughing or singing. The vagus nerve connects to your vocal cords, meaning positive use of your voice can improve your mood and anxiety symptoms.
Passive Vagus Nerve Exercises
In times when your anxiety is through the roof, it can be hard to actively try the aforementioned vagus nerve exercises. This is where passive techniques come in, which allow you the benefits of anxiety reduction while you simply sit back and relax.
Your options include:
- Listening to mellow music
- Receiving a gentle massage
- Resting in cold water
- Exposing yourself to beautiful imagery (digital or in-person)
Choose one of these things in your times of high anxiety and you’re bound to experience some relief.
You can also buy vagus nerve stimulator equipment online. It only takes 15 minutes a day and is a safe and easy product to use. You could even combine stimulator treatment with another passive anxiety-reduction technique like listening to music to improve your results.
Aside from reducing anxiety, vagus nerve stimulation is an approved treatment for epilepsy and treatment-resistant depression (TRD). This is due to the fact that the vagus nerve works across various systems in your body. As such, the benefits of vagal exercise include improved mental health, blood pressure regulation, digestion, and more.
Decrease Your Anxiety for a More Peaceful Life
With these vagus nerve exercises, you can practice stress and anxiety reduction wherever you are.
Keep reading our blog for more health and wellness information to live a more peaceful life.