You’re running for your life through a burning building—someone or something fearsome is hot on your heels. Gasping for air, you feel the floor give out beneath your feet. This is your brain on anxiety, according to people who’ve experienced panic attacks.
Even when it’s not quite that intense, a mind buzzing with stress and worry can really screw up the day. Instead of getting sucked into that black hole of fear and loathing, get some help from meditation and pranayama. Prana-whatta? This Sanskrit-derived term you may have heard in yoga class essentially translates to “breath work.” It’s meant to allow the mind and body to focus deeper into meditation. And it’s not hocus-pocus—scientific studies have found that pranayama has positive effects on both physical health and cognitive function.
In this video, wellness coach and yoga teacher Jennifer Partridge guides us through a pranayama technique that uses meditation and what’s known as a “buzzing bee breath” to quiet a restless mind and balance the right and left hemispheres. No need for any bells and whistles either—all you need are your own vocal chords and five minutes. Press play to try this anti-anxiety meditation practice and breathe a sigh of relief.
Produced and Directed by: Liza Glucoft
Director of Photography: Naeem Munaf
Editor: Stephanie Provence