Breathing Exercises for Energy and Productivity

Breathing Exercises for Energy and Productivity (Image Source: Shutterstock)

1. Counting Exercise

This first exercise involves some simple counting while monitoring your breathing patterns. It’s perfect if you feel restless or frazzled, and it focuses on slow inhalations and incrementally increasing how long your exhalations last. To do this breathing exercise:

  • First, inhale to the count of two
  • Then exhale to the count of two
  • Next, inhale to the count of two once again but exhale to the count of three
  • Repeat this sequence by inhaling to the count of two, exhaling to the count of four, etc.

2. Deep Breathing Exercise

This next deep breathing exercise requires you to sit in a specific way. If you do it properly, you’ll feel calmer than ever. To begin:

  • Sit with your back upright in with your legs folded. Alternatively, you can sit in a chair that supports your back
  • Put your hands on your knees and close your eyes
  • Then, focus on your breathing as best as you can and slowly inhale for as long as is comfortable
  • When your lungs are full, exhale and repeat this sequence 4 to 5 times

3. Lion Breathing Exercise

The “lion breathing” exercise can be performed either while sitting on the floor or on a desk chair that supports your back. In either case, keep your back straight throughout the exercise’s duration.

  • Inhale like you are breathing normally
  • But when you exhale, open your mouth and pull your tongue out
  • Make a “ha” sound as soon as you exhale
  • It might feel a little silly at first
  • But after 5 to 10 times, you may discover that lion breathing boosts your energy significantly

4. Bellows Breath Exercise

Also called “Bhastrika,” the bellows breath exercise is often used in yoga. In theory, it can boost your life force and clear your thoughts in more ways than one. Some believe that bellows breathing exercises can support your metabolism and digestive system. In any case, it can help to give you some energy quickly and easily. Do this exercise by:

  • Sitting up while relaxed and taking a few breaths using your nose. Breathe deeply and, as you inhale, expand your stomach fully
  • When you exhale, do it forcefully through your nose. Then, forcefully inhale
  • You should try to breathe (both inhaling and exhaling) once per second
  • As you move, keep your neck, shoulders, and chest still. Your stomach or belly should be the place that moves the most
  • After 10 cycles of the bellows breath exercise, breathe like normal
  • Then, wait 30 seconds and repeat the cycle. Try to breathe for 20 cycles instead of 10
  • Repeat the above cycle and go for 30 cycles with the bellows breath exercise

5. The 5–3–3 Breathing Exercise

5–3–3 breathing is an excellent breathing exercise if you need to gather energy quickly. It’s very straightforward:

  • First, take five deep breaths. Use your nose to breathe in and exhale out through the mouth
  • When you breathe, try to completely fill your lungs with air and to completely empty them with each exhalation
  • Inhale and exhale three times very quickly using your nose and mouth
  • After three breaths, inhale and exhale three times while being as loud as possible
  • Do this twice. At the end, you should feel energized, and your lungs should feel like they have some extra capacity due to being stretched out

6. Box Breathing Exercise

The box breathing exercise is a highly important technique you can use to improve your productivity and focus. Here’s how to do it:

  • Inhale through the nose and into your stomach for four seconds
  • Hold your breath for four seconds
  • Then exhale through your nose for four seconds
  • Hold your breath for four more seconds before inhaling once again

7. Alternate Nostril Breathing Exercise

Last but not least, the alternate nostril breathing exercise can bolster your energy and even assist with mild congestion! By the end, you should be able to breathe through your nose much more easily.

  • Start in a seated position and put your left palm on your thigh or knee
  • Then take a few breaths, both inhalations and exhalations, using your nose
  • Take the thumb of your right hand and close your right nostril. Inhale through the left nostril
  • Use your ring finger and close the left nostril. Hold it there for one second
  • Then, remove your thumb from your right nostril and exhale through the nose. Inhale through the right nostril
  • Then repeat the process by holding both nostrils closed for one second
  • Remove your ring finger from the left nostril, exhale, and inhale through that open nostril


As you can see, there are many ways to practice breathing exercises and bolster your energy and productivity across the board. Even better, the more you practice these breathing exercises, the more benefits you’ll reap in the long term.



Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store



We’re a BIPOC-owned mental health and wellness company. We create expert-driven content specifically designed to help you become 1% better each day.