Monday, December 17, 2018
Do you ever stop to think about breathing? You literally breathe every minute of your life. You breathe over 900 breaths per hour. Not only is it vital to our survival, breathing can have a number of other benefits: clear your head, counter stress, deliver oxygen to your bloodstream, control blood pressure and it releases toxins (you literally expel carbon dioxide with each breath… in many ways, each breath can cleanse your body). It's the ultimate in unconscious competence. Maybe it's time to pull that back to a conscious competence… take it to a level where you can excel and make something so automatic, automatically work for you and even heal. Many people believe that deep breathing can be a natural painkiller. Meditation can use various breathing exercises. Yoga techniques require concentrated breathing. And many athletes swear by several different techniques. Many runners take double breaths through the nose and a long exhale through the mouth [in-in out, in-in out] and other runners feel that breathing in and out through the mouth is best (the most oxygen intake possible). For anxiety, I've spoken about "box breathing" in the past (in 4-second increments, breathe into the lungs, hold it for a few seconds – breathe out slowly and hold. Then repeat). Be aware of your breathing and allow it to restore and heal you. Listen to your body. And consider some of the ways in which something you do every day can be a tremendous health benefit to you.