Just take a breathMarch 11, 2021
This statement can sometimes be misleading.
For most of us this is what breathing is...
An automated process that we hardly ever pay attention to, or even think about, until there is a hindrance that forces us to start taking our health more seriously.
They say if you are in control of your breath, no person or situation can take your peace.
A breath is not something we “just” take, rather a mindful process powerful enough to shift your mindset.
Good quality breathing is essential to our health and is a great technique to use to get you back into the present moment when you feel overwhelmed or completely run down by your daily tasks. Breathing can lift your mood as well as your energy when you are feeling tired.
One of the main focuses in yoga, meditation or a mindfulness practice is breath. According to the philosophy, the breath is the gateway to purifying the mind, body and intellect and creating an awareness of the connection between the three.
Through training, we can change or rather enhance the rate, depth and quality of our breathing.
The way we breathe is an extension to how we live.
Lets read that again.
The way you breathe can be life changing.
We often hear in class to breathe through our nose.
Here are some reasons why:
• Prevents large amounts of germs and bacteria from actually getting into your lungs.
• Allows you more control over the flow of air, therefore directing it down into your abdomen.
• Abdominal breathing is more regular, calming and steady. It eases tension and stress in the nervous system and therefore in your physical body as well.
• It warms the incoming air and this helps in the efficiency of absorption of oxygen into your lungs.
There are many different techniques on how to breathe and strengthen the capacity of your lungs.
Here is an example of a natural breath technique to ease a little tension and become more mindful:
1. Sit or lie down in a quiet space; close your eyes and notice the sensation of your in and out breath.
2. Not changing or trying to control anything but just becoming aware of your natural breath.
3. Now start counting up to 4 on your inhale, and count 4 on your exhale. Slowing down your breath and keeping the inhale and the exhale the same length.
4. Try to send your inhale down to your tummy(feel your navel rise like a balloon) and then as you exhale let the navel slowly move back towards your spine.
5. Once you can count your inhale and exhale to 4, try to hold your breath for 4 counts after you have inhaled and exhaled. Retaining or holding your breath for short periods helps in strengthening your lung capacity.
Another way to slow your breathing is to synchronise your inhale and exhale with the following:
This gives your mind something visual to focus on so that your breath can slow simultaneously with it.
So the next time someone cuts you off in traffic or says something that you find hurtful, see if you can pause and “take a deep breath” before reacting.
I hope this has given you a little more insight into the way you breathe.
Especially in this time, where we have a disease attacking our respiratory system, your mind, body and lung health is of vital importance.
Take care of yourself and remember the power already lies within you.
Breathe. Let go. And remind yourself that this very moment is the only one you know you have for sure. – Oprah Winfrey
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