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Breathwork - A simple technique.




Our breath is always with us. It brings us back to the present moment and helps calm and regulate our autonomic nervous system (ANS). It is a powerful way to relieve stress, heighten performance and concentration. In this day and age, our systems are being stressed more than ever, so a simple reminder to breathe can alter your experience and put you back in the drivers seat. My own journey of breath work was facilitated through a concussion and whiplash injury I had in February 2016 while working in the backcountry. Eventually I discovered through my meditation practice and reiki that bringing an awareness to my breath periodically throughout the day was key to my healing process and sometimes necessary to get through a moment or a day. Since then, I continue to practice breath work and integrate it throughout a day. It has been an integral aspect to healing and calming down my overactive autonomic nervous system.

One of my go to techniques is called box breathing. It's highly effective and accessible. It's used by athletes, navy seals and medical professionals to name a few. If you are new to breathing consciously, then I recommend sitting or lying down as there is potential for dizziness and best to do so with someone around or go to a class (Jeff at BreathArmy has an abundance of offerings and some free guided breath work offerings) . If dizziness occurs, please allow normal breathing to resume before returning to the breathing technique or to your daily life.

Now that you're comfortable, let's breathe:


In for ... 1 2 3 4 ...

Hold ... 1 2 3 4 ...



Out ... 1 2 3 4 ...


Hold ... 1 2 3 4 ...

In ... 1 2 3 4 ...


Hold ... 1 2 3 4 ...

Out ... 1 2 3 4 ...


Hold ... 1 2 3 4 ...


For best results, repeat this cycle twice more to complete four total. Then when you relax control of your breath, take a moment to notice how you're feeling. Notice sensations and the shift in mental state. Know that practice is your friend and coming back to it daily (as much as needed/wanted) provides you with the best results that you'll notice in the long term.

One breath at a time, you have what it takes to reprogram your system. It simply takes a combination of desire, discipline, awareness and focus. Stay open and curious; change your habits to change your life.



food4thought

"Nature is pleased with simplicity. And nature is no dummy."

~ Isaac Newton


 

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©2020 by Lindsay Donovan