The Magic in Breathing

We so easily recognize the cycles of things in the natural world. 

The seasons.

The Moon. 

Our menstrual cycle. 

In most cases we see these things as regular, flowing occurrences that come and go with some semblance of order.  Perhaps this perception of what cyclical things look like confuses us when we are dealing with the cycles in our own lives.  We expect things should flow, one into another.  Yes, we tolerate bumps in the road, but when it comes to the unknown, I know I have a tendency to freak out a bit.  An example of this in my life would be when I encounter a funk or a period of time when I feel out of flow, out of touch with myself.  Keep in mind that as a coach and a healer I teach women to honor where they are in the moment.  I help them to focus on gratitude for the present,  for each experience.  Yet, when I find myself feeling a little down or a little lost, I start to judge myself and I start searching for answers.

Why to I feel this way?  What is going on?  How can I fix it?

I can hear the gremlin in my head say, “you know how to fix this.  Do what you need to do to get over it.”  Would I ever tell a client or a friend to just get over it?  Hell no!  What I fail to honor in those moments is that life is cyclical, but not predictable.  It is a series of ups and downs.  There are moments of immense joy and peace mixed with moments of fear and doubt.  And really, all of it is okay.  It all has a place.  

Why then do I freak out?  Because I am human. 

Human beings when faced with uncertainty will always have a moment of fear and doubt, a feeling of oh shit!  We wonder what is going to happen next.  

I myself, do not really enjoy this feeling, that is until I start to breathe.  I breathe really deeply and for a long time.  Then I find grace in acknowledging this feeling.  Acknowledging my humanness and surrendering into that. 

It is so interesting that we forget to breathe.  We forget the simplest thing.  Yes, obviously, we are breathing all the time.  Our body does it for us.  But it is often shallow and not done in a calming fashion.  In order to really benefit from deep breathing you need to breathe correctly. Here is how you do yogic breathing:  On the in breath the belly and chest expand and on the out breath the belly should contract and your belly button should push towards your spine.  I know I spent the first 42 years of my life breathing backwards.  Trying to always suck my belly in and not push it out.  There is magic in yogic breathing!

Could it really be that easy?  Stop. Observe. Breathe.  Relax.  

Will this solve all your problems or bring an end to your feelings of fear and doubt?  Surely not right away.  But a consistent practice of stopping to breathe DEEPLY and be in the moment can go a long way towards helping you to stop the feeling of freak out and surrender just a little bit to what is happening in the moment.  A long line of these moments strung together can truly transform how you experience your life.

The truth is that we create our own reality with our thoughts and our actions.  So it only makes sense that taking a few minutes now and then to breathe, surrender and be in the moment will create more peace and calm in your life. 

Does it change what is going on?  No.  Does it begin to create a new reality and a new way of being?  Absolutely.  

I love how small things done over time can change the landscape of our lives.  So today, just start with breathing.  Long, deep belly breaths for even 3 minutes a day will provide you a little respite from the stress and the chaos.  Over the course of days and weeks you will begin to see a new way of being emerge.   You will create a new reality.   

You are worthy of your own care and attention.

Much love.