Discover the Power of Breathing
We inhale; we exhale. Most of the time this process happens completely unconsciously, we’re unaware of the magic that is happening as we breathe. In the video below I’ll show you a breath-work technique to help you harness the power of your breath.
As you’re reading this, you’ve probably taken a few deep breaths. On some level, you’ll feel in your body and maybe even your mind the soothing nature of a deep inhale and then a long sigh. Good quality breathing makes life easier and more enjoyable overall – and it may release tension, reduce anxiety, promote physical health, and even reduce physical pain. A comprehensive study at Trinity College in Dublin has shown the links between conscious breathing and improving brain function and health.
Transformational breath-work takes breathing to another level entirely. You may experience shifts in brain states, process unconscious and conscious emotions and release trauma to name but a few of the benefits. To explore these deeper I suggest working with an experienced breath-work teacher.
Leading brain researcher Dr. J Allan Hobson sums up the power of your breathing on a physiological level:
“It is the one physical link between the bottom up (involuntary; unconscious) and top down (voluntary; conscious) processes of the brain."
The exercise in the video above is what I call Expansive Breathing. My experimentation with breath-work started when I began training as a yoga teacher and continues to this day. I play with certain techniques and use them to enhance my meditation practices, help me focus and many instances experience a quieting of the mind after I practise.
With the above technique, you can use it if you already have a daily meditation practice, all you would do is incorporate it before you begin your practice. Otherwise, it can be a helpful technique to use if you’re feeling overwhelmed, anxious, tired or caught up in the mind. Just take a few momoments afterwards to sit quietly and feel the integration.
Just remember that all of these practices, including meditation, require consistency, gentle discipline and an open mind. This technique will also encourage you to breathe a little deeper overall throughout the day.
The most beautiful thing is that breath-work is a tool that you can take with you anywhere. It’s free and accessible at any time. In Buddhist traditions, it’s often said that ‘you live life, much like you breathe’. So let's make our breaths conscious, deep, and nourishing.