I often times take breathing for granted. Do you? Even though we do it every day at every moment, we hardly ever think about it or give any special emphasis on it. It's our life force....without it, we would die. So, how can you make your breathing better and your life better? Well, it's very simple. Pay attention to it and focus on it a little bit more. Give it a little TLC with these mindful exercises.
First, sit in a comfortable position, sitting up straight. You may also do this standing, with feet firmly on the earth. Inhale and allow your breath to go all the way down into your belly (versus your chest). Then, exhale completely, as if emptying out all the air of a balloon. Inhale again, slowly, listening to and feeling your breath flow through your body. Do this a few times, enjoying the moment. This is a form of meditation, and great when practiced at least once a day.
While sitting or standing in a comfortable position, inhale and count to 1, then exhale. Inhale again, counting this time to 2, then exhale. Inhale counting to 3, and exhale. Do this up to the count of 6. Remember that your exhale should be longer than your inhale and if needed, count with your fingers, instead of in your head. This breathing exercise is great for relieving stress.
While sitting or standing in a comfortable position, rest your hands and arms by your sides. Then, slowly lift your hands up while you inhale. When your hands reach the top of your head, you can clap them together or just touch them together. Then, exhale slowly, bringing your arms back down to your sides. Repeat 3 more times. This is a great stretch and wonderful way to start off the day. Smile. It will energize you.
When you breath, think of the ocean waves rolling in and out. Listen to your breath and hear the waves bring peace into your heart. Let all of your worries be washed out to the sea. When you breath, it's good to make a sound like ocean waves. It relaxes your mind and body, and brings harmony into your life.
Whether the lights are dim or whether it's the heat of the day and the sun is shining down on you, this breathing/meditation exercise gets all that "goo" out of your body and energizes the spirit. Om or Aum is a mantra or mystical sound often used in meditation. It's a humming sound that you make when you exhale. Practice inhaling, and then exhaling the word/sound "aum." Let it last and then fade away. For example, inhale the count of 5, and then exhale the count of 6 saying: "au.............mmmmm" You could say another word, such as "peace" instead of "om," however, om is a bit easier on the mouth and throat. It's also a very universal sound, whereas other words and sounds are much harder to pronounce while meditating.
Remember that breathing is the life force that keeps us alive. It is more powerful than we think, and it can be used to help relieve stress, give us energy, and much much more.