Ian here with the mindful revolution to remind you – don’t forget to breathe!
But first, why am I talking about breathing? We’re alive, obviously we’re breathing!
The breath is one of the most (if not the most) common anchor/home base to use in meditation, and there are some very good reasons for this. The breath is kind of like the gateway to the mind. It’s a great barometer of our current mental state. When we are stressed, our breathing becomes rapid, shallow, and irregular. When we are relaxed, our breathing naturally becomes calm, deep, and smooth. Noticing what is going on with our breath is a great way to recognize our current state of mind and stress level.
AND, although the breath normally happens on its own, according to how we are feeling physically, with mindfulness we can manually control it. This means that we can override the body’s stress response by intentionally breathing in a calm, deep, and smooth way, and then the body and mind follow. It’s like the mind says “wait a minute, I thought we were super stressed, but we’re breathing like a calm person, so we must be calm.” It’s an effective way to pull the body out of stress and calm down.
The wisdom you were taught as a child about how to calm down was right: take a deep breath and let it go.
What are the signs that I need to take a deep breath (of several)?
- Your fuse is about to blow, or you’re about to have a meltdown
- You can feel yourself getting tense or you are currently in a very stressful situation
- You experience chronic stress and/or tension
- You just want to relax!
How do I practice deep breathing when I need to calm down?
The good news is that you already know how to breath. The trick is REMEMBERING to pause and take deep breaths when you are already caught in emotional reactivity. We can practice this by intentionally pausing to take a few deep breaths throughout the day. Before you check your email, when you’re stopped at a traffic light, in a meeting, wherever, really. The breath is a great meditation tool because you always have it with you. Just take a moment to pause, notice how you’re feeling, and enjoy a few deliberate, slow, deep breaths, in and out.
What do I do now?
In my Health Coaching practice, I help people learn how to relax in any situation with deep breathing exercises that can be done anytime, anywhere.
If you feel too stressed to relax, and you KNOW it’s affecting your health, your weight and your energy levels, then click here NOW to schedule a time to talk with me about how to reduce or cope better with the stress in your life.
I’ve helped tons of clients solve this problem, and chances are very good that I can help you, too.
To your health!