When you own your breath, nobody can steal your peace.
– Author Unknown –
How often do you find yourself in a situation where you just don’t know what to do, or wondering what to do next? In those moments of feeling lost or confused, how conscious are you of your breathing?
This morning I went off to find something only to realise I couldn’t recall what I was looking for. My mind was like a big black hole. Frustration started to rise within me. Why couldn’t I remember what was I looking for? Through the frustration I heard a little voice say ‘breathe’. In that moment of silence that followed I smiled and took a big deep breath. Suddenly I knew what I was looking for.
I was so grateful on two counts. One was to finish the task I had set out to do. The other was for the beautiful reminder of the role that breathing plays in our lives.
Did you know that humans can go about 40 days without food, about three days without water, and just a couple of minutes without air? Without air the brain starves of oxygen, normal body functions cease to exist and eventually we die. Thank goodness that the process of breathing is something the body does automatically. There’s really no need for us to give it much thought. Or is there?
Breathing is essential to life
Being aware of your breath, and taking the time to breath deeply has long lasting benefits.
Breathing Assists with Detoxifying
Your lymphatic system is responsible for flushing out toxins and carrying away waste from your immune system. Unlike the heart, the lymphatic system does not have its own built-in pump. In order to keep the toxins moving, it relies on breathing and bodily movement to detoxify.
Breathing Assists with Mental Clarity
When the voice inside your head is so loud you can’t hear yourself think, or you are stuck in events that have already happened or, you think may happen, taking a deep breath shuts off the noise. It centres you, bringing you into the present moment and connects you with yourself.
Breathing Relaxes the Body
Deep breathing triggers the parasympathetic nervous system which neutralises the impact of stress on your physical body, and elicits a feeling of calm.
Have you ever watched a baby breathing? They breathe in from the bottom up. Their intake of air fills the abdomen, the stomach rises and then their lungs fill. When they exhale they empty from the top down. It’s their natural breathing state, and once upon a time it was yours. If you’ve forgotten what it feels like to breath into your abdomen before filling your lungs, find somewhere comfortable to lie down. Put your hands on your abdomen and just breathe. Focus on the breath. Your hands will rise on the inhale and fall on the exhale. Welcome to deep breathing and beautiful state of relaxation.
Here is an exercise to bring about a sense of calm through the use of breath. Do this exercise whenever you feel the need to go within and simply be present and in the moment.
- Take a long, slow breath in through your nose, first filling your abdomen, then your lungs.
- Hold your breath to the count of “three”
- Exhale slowly through pursed lips, while you relax the muscles in your face, jaw, shoulders and stomach
- Repeat this exercise three times.
Deep breathing is something you can do. You were born doing it.
To be aware of your breathing is to be aware of you. Remember, you are the #1 person in your life. When you are tuned into your breath, you are present in the moment. You are not in the past, nor are you in the future. You are in the space where life is created. You are right here. Right now. It’s where magic happens.
Do you struggle to be present in the moment?
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In support of your healing from within,
Certified Body Code Practitioner