Keep calm and try controlled breathing
Our self-help tools and High Res app provide a range of free tools you can use to help your mental and physical health.
The tools follow the SMART approach (Self-Management and Resilience Training), which is an ADF program for enhancing stress management skills and improving resilience.
ADF members use SMART throughout their career, from recruit training to pre-deployment (BattleSMART), and as part of the transition to civilian process (LifeSMART). Families access FamilySMART through the Defence Community Organisation (known as Defence Member and Family Support from July 2021).
These resilience skills are extremely important to draw on and the Controlled Breathing Tool is just one of a suite of tools we have available.
A slower breathing rate (roughly 10 cycles per minute) leaves you feeling less stressed, more in control and will help manage racing thoughts and unpleasant emotions. The calming influence of slow, deep breathing resets the balance of oxygen and carbon dioxide in the body. Deep breathing also reduces heart rate and blood pressure, reduces lactic acid build up in muscles, and allows the immune system to function normally.
Regular deep breathing practice can become an automatic response to stress, allowing you to gain control of your physical reactions in high pressure situations and increase positive responses.
All you need to get started is the tool and a quiet space.