A helpful breath exercise.
Have you ever been somewhere speaking to someone and your heart starts racing, thumping in your chest and your breath starts to become shorter and shallower each time you try and speak?..
Not only is it an uncomfortable sensation, it usually distracts you or worse stops you entirely from speaking.
I'm not sure if you have noticed but when you have that sensation, in the hour following you can feel fatigue start to set in. Being able to regulate in those moments or minutes can help you regain your voice and lessen the sensation of fatigue you feel afterward.
Here is a simple breath exercise that might just help you in the moment without a single person noticing you are doing it.
As you start to feel yourself breathing lighter or you notice that sensation of your heart thumping in your chest, close your mouth straight away. Breath in only through your nose. Try to start with a four count breath in and slightly part your lips to softly breathe out a short breath. Try to keep that breath out short and soft.
Repeat it again by closing your mouth and try to extend your breath in through your nose to five counts, and a two count breath out through your mouth with your lips only slightly parted.
There is a little side note here that might be helpful for you to know:
Because you are focusing on your breath, you may not hear everything the other people around you are saying. It will only take you two or three breaths for you to start to feel calmer and catch back up to the topic of conversation.
The secret: Practice it before you need it!!
Tip: Your heart racing and your breath becoming shallower are usually the last signs to appear when you are feeling the stress you are feeling in that moment. So try to notice other signs your body gives you before that happens so you can start your breathing earlier and not have to experience those feelings.