Hi there, let’s take a moment and think of how we breathe.
Deep, conscious but relaxed breathing brings a great mind-body connection. Personally, I love to focus on it several times throughout the day. The instant benefit is amazing and it gives a ‘breather’, a moment of calmness. At times I imagine my breath moving like the gentle waves coming in and out at the shoreline. Just the thought of it makes me take a deep breath!
And since I enjoy it so much I love to bring some awareness of the power of our breath to others, hence a quick post on this topic today!
We often tend to breathe very shallowly throughout the day. Letting the breath stop around the lung area; and/or tugging our belly in while inhaling instead of expending the belly to let the air flow deep. Have a go and check out your breathing right now, without thinking of it!
Is it stuck? Does it flow nice and relaxed? Do you have to force it all the way down into your abdomen area? Or are you able to feel your abdomen expand like a balloon while you inhale and to gently tug your navel back towards the spine while you exhale?
My Yoga teacher once told me that Yogis believe that humans and animals have a certain number of breaths in life. So the slower, deeper and consciously we breathe the longer we might live. Whether you agree to this thought or not, deep, conscious and relaxed breathing does have its benefits.
And during boot-camp, we focus on the breath especially to calm down our breathing and heart rate after the high-intensity/interval training. It’s amazing how quickly the breath and the heart rate slow down when you focus on it!
But even if you aren’ t into Yoga and such; become aware of your breathing pattern! Because deep breathing helps to:
- clean the ‘old air’ out of your system to make space for more fresh oxygen.
- relax and calm down the mind.
- relax and calm down the body and its functions, the pulse and heart rate (great after a good workout or when you feel anxious and nervous!)
- focus and concentrate.
- increase your energy.
Of course, we can’t breathe deep all day long. But being aware of our breath and really concentrating on it throughout the day does have a huge positive impact on our wellbeing, especially the physical and emotional.
During breathing practise the exhalation should be double the time than the inhalation. So try to count to 3 or 4 when you inhale and slowly exhale to the count of 6 respectively 8.
Feel how the abdomen expands as you inhale and how the navel tugs gently back towards your spine as you exhale.
Why not use the time when you sit down with a cup of tea, a glass of wine or are out for a walk and to focus on your breathing pattern. “Catch your breath!” – even if just for a minute or two.
Or use it in moments of overwhelm, when the nerves start to get the better of you! Nobody will even notice what you do!
Some of you out there reading this might be expats and with summertime approaching a move might wait for you, or you feel overwhelmed by having to say goodbye to dear friends? Turn to your breath when it all feels too much. And let me know how it goes for you!
Focusing on breathing – it’s as well a great way to calm down before falling asleep! In-and-out-in-and-out-in-and-out…
Let the breath be your anchor!
Now go and breathe!
I hope you enjoyed this post. As a wellness coach, I work with female expats when they feel emotionally exhausted by this rollercoaster life. I help them to release stressors, bring awareness to their well-being so that they feel grounded and find ease, connection and joy in their day-to-day life.