Master Your Breath, Master Your Life
How Changing Your Breathing Patterns Could Alter Your Experience
Every breath that you take is sending signals from your brain to your body about how you feel. You take over 20 thousand breaths per day and each of those inhales is an opportunity to invite in a different state of being. Each one of those exhales is a gift in releasing and letting go. The trouble is we are mindlessly breathing and our breath patterns are controlling our life.
If you are walking around depressed your breathing patterns are going to look and feel very different than someone who is moving with joy. By learning to breathe properly you can begin to show up in your life differently.
For instance, it’s hard to maintain a state of depression when you are walking around with a straight spine, shoulders back, and chin up because your breath will feel full and intentional. Your breathing becomes full because your posture is more open, allowing air to travel through your body. Whereas if you walk around with your shoulders slumped forward, head down, and back rounded, it’s going to be harder for air to travel fully into the diaphragm. The poor posture has you breathing short and shallow into your chest, which is a secondary breathing function. Of course you feel depressed.
Our breath is an integral part of who we are and how we show up in this life, yet we have never been taught how to use it properly. Let me ask you this…When was the last time you noticed your breath? Most people will respond with a time they felt out of breath due to running or crying or some circumstance that forced them to pay attention.
Breath is essential!
Developing a mindful breath practice is at the heart of any yoga practice. Guiding you to gain greater insight into your physical, mental, and spiritual health. Mastering your breath is essential for any one of these components to meet its full potential.
Each time you inhale your lungs carry fresh oxygen to your blood which works as a bus delivering that oxygen to your cells. This happens every single time you inhale! And it’s an involuntary act so it’s happening whether you’re thinking about it or not. Super cool.
Most people, most of the time are not breathing to their full capacity.
Each breath has the power to nurture your body. Most people have tight and tired lungs and an underdeveloped diaphragm. Why? Because we have never been taught about how to use our breath to completely transform our lives.
When you learn to master your breath and develop strong lungs and a fit diaphragm more oxygen is moving to your cells. The more deeply you breathe the more oxygen you take in and the more oxygen you take in the more you are enriching your bloodstream that carries this vital nutrition to your cells and your organs.
Optimize your mental state
When your body is feeling properly fueled you show up in a better mental state. You feel more centered and focused. Our breath affects our minds and our minds affect our breath. They’re like two peas in a pod.
Negative thought patterns bring about anxiety, depression, and overwhelm. These thoughts affect our posture and breathing patterns. Positive thought patterns bring about confidence, determination, and joy and these thoughts affect how we show up and breathe in a very different way.
The trick to becoming a master of your breath is being able to use breath control at any moment to change your energy and thoughts around certain situations.
Change your breath, change your brainwaves. Chance your brainwaves, change your energy. Change your energy, change your life.
Life is always going to throw you unexpected curveballs. You will always have those challenging relationships and situations that make you feel uncomfortable. You can’t stop that from happening, but you can change how you relate to those situations when they do come up. You can let those times send your mind into a battle of ego or sorrow affecting your thoughts, your breath, and your ability to handle the situation. Or you can guide yourself into the present moment by taking a slow deep breath.
The moment you start to do this you will feel more focused, grounded, and centered in your experience. You begin to observe things around you much more clearly and take a pause to sense what is your next best move instead of reacting. This helps you be in charge of your life.
Tony Robbins has a saying, “Life is happening for you, not to you.” We all have heard that you get what you focus on and the same is true with breath. The quality of your life can be determined by the quality of your breath.
Mastering your breath is about mastering your mind. It is at the heart of mindfulness practices. Mindfulness has become so critical today because the world seems to continue to move at a faster and faster pace. We have learned to wear our exhaustion as a badge of honor. We feel the need to be busy at every second of the day and we aren’t functioning at a prime level.
When we breathe short shallow breaths we are depriving our body of the nutrients it needs to function fully. Mindfulness is about slowing down our minds, our breaths, and our experience to live more fully in the moment. This helps bring more joy into our experience because we are present to recognize the little things and it begins with our breathing.
Let’s try it right now.
- Move to the edge of your seat and let your spine run long and straight
- Plant your feet firmly on the floor hip-width distance apart
- Tuck your chin slightly
- Let your hands come to rest on your thighs
- Count in your mind as you inhale 1–2–3–4–5
- Pause for a moment
- Exhale as you count in your mind 5–4–3–2–1
- Repeat 5–10 rounds
See how it immediately changes your mental state. Clearing your mind and bringing you into the moment. You can also play with saying other things as you inhale and exhale.
This is me inhaling, this is me exhaling. Whatever works.
To master your breath you need to have a regular practice of focused breathwork. This trains your mind to notice when you begin to fall into negative thought patterns. It helps you to be aware of how you are holding your body and is a sure-fire way to beat stress, depression, and anxiety once you make a regular habit of it.
We have learned to give away our control and wallow in our own misery. We know this is unhealthy, but there is a way out and that way is through your breath. Right now you carry inside you the answer to mastering your life. With a little effort (10–15 minutes each day to start) you can begin the take back your life.
Master your breath, master your life.
If you want more information about how you can start making profound change and master your breath join me over at Breath Mindset and begin your journey today.
Originally published at http://heart-lightstudios.com on February 1, 2022.