SOCIAL

Mindfulness 101: Tool #3

By Vitina |Comments: 1 | July 12, 2017

What’s one thing you do naturally but you most likely don’t think about on a daily basis?

It’s the link between your mind and body.

Can you think of what it is?

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It’s your breath!

Take a moment to think about these scenarios:

  • A deadline is inching up
  • There is traffic and you’re going to miss a crucial meeting
  • You’re in an argument with a loved one
  • You’re at the airport and you forgot your passport
  • A lion is chasing you

How do you breathe in these situations?
Shallow and probably quite fast. Your heart starts racing. It’s fight or flight response. When you are in danger, fight or flight mode is working in your favour. Stress is an inevitable part of life but can be detrimental to your health when it is at chronic levels for long periods of time.

Now, take a moment to think about these scenarios:

  • You’re at the spa
  • You’re on a retreat
  • You’re being cuddled by a puppy

How do you breathe?
You most likely breathe in gently and deeply, before letting go of the air slowly.

Conscious breathing is a great tool for people who think they can’t meditate.

Tool #3

2-1-4: Stress Relief Breathing | Step-by-step instructions

  1. Set a timer for a minimum of five minutes.
  2. Sit still and tall in a comfortable position on the floor or on a chair.
  3. Close your eyes and begin breathing in and out through your nose in a natural rhythm to get comfortable.
  4. Begin by inhaling for a count of two… hold the breath in for a count of one… exhale gently, counting out for four… and finish by holding the breath out for a count of one. Keep your breathing even and smooth.
  5. Continue with this breathing pattern until the timer goes off.
  6. Sit for a few moments afterward, noticing how you feel.

This is my favourite breathing technique to use when I’m in a stressful situation, like when I’m really nervous before a presentation or if I’m worried that I’m running late… the list goes on.

Just as our emotions can affect our breathing, it’s quite fascinating that you can do the reverse. You can trick your mind to believe that you’re relaxed with your breath.

I always teach and share from personal experience. If you need scientific proof you can find that right here or here, my friend.

Let me know if you have any questions in the comments below!

1 Comment

  • Natasha Mitchell
    March 5, 2018

    Thanks I love this tip – helps to have the instructions on how to do the breathing technique, i will try it the next time I am feeling stressed.

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