For people with anxiety, the world can often get a bit overwhelming. What may start out as a completely manageable morning can quickly slide into hyperventilating, sweating and sheer dread.
That's why the Blurt Foundation has shared a handful of calming animations on Facebook, to encourage those who suffer from anxiety to take some slow, deep breaths and collect their thoughts.
"If you have anxiety, take deep breaths in sync with this."
The GIF above was shared on Blurt's Peer Support Closed Facebook Group, where members can talk openly about depression and anxiety, and support and learn from peers.
The post has been liked and shared hundreds of times, with many praising how useful the GIF is and saving it to their phones so they can use it when having an anxiety attack.
But it hasn't worked for all. A few users said that the GIF is moving too fast and keeping up with the rhythm is making them more anxious.
"Proof that one size doesn't fit all. I can't keep up with this rhythm - making me feel panicky that even my lungs are weird," wrote one user, to which Blurt Foundation replied: "We're all individuals. Hope you find something that DOES work twinkletoes."
The Blurt Foundation has since uploaded another helpful GIF to help people steady their breathing.
"It gives us something positive to focus on too when our thoughts are hurting us," reads the caption.
The NHS recommend deep breathing as a means of relaxation, that will help relieve anxiety and create a feeling of calm.
- Fill up the whole of your lungs with air, without forcing. Imagine you're filling up a bottle, so that your lungs fill from the bottom.
- Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth.
- Breathe in slowly and regularly counting from one to five (don’t worry if you can’t reach five at first).
- Then let the breath escape slowly, counting from one to five.
- Keep doing this until you feel calm. Breathe without pausing or holding your breath.
The Blurt Foundation is dedicated to helping those with depression through raising awareness and facilitating peer-to-peer support. To find out more about their services, visit their website.