Healing In a Breath

Breathing…… Its happening whether we are aware of it or not. And thank goodness because I hold my breath a lot. I can’t tell you how often through out a day I will become aware that I IMG_1436have exhaled but did not inhale.

My professional self would tell me that I may have a resistance to taking in life and maybe there’s some truth to that. It could also be an unconscious habit that keeps my feelings from surfacing. A bodily defense against feeling too deeply. A very common defense for people and probably more true for me.

While I was attending holistic school, breath work was a daily practice. We would do all sorts of different breathing techniques including rebirthing. Rebirthing was sort of a hyperventilating ¬†type of breathing facilitated by another practitioner. As you would breath quickly in and out, emotions would be stirred up and expressed on the exhale. With rebirthing you were not to stay in the emotion but keep breathing through it. (this was how we did it) I remember actually saying in a whiney voice “ugh I don’t want to breath today.” Thats how much I didn’t want to feel.

Anyhow, The point is, the breath is a way to access those emotions that are trapped, stuck and well hidden in your body. By doing conscious, aware, breathing you can help yourself open up to the parts of you that need attention.

As I have said in previous posts. Emotions, feeling, expressing honestly were not something I was comfortable with. So when it was time for breath work i did not like it so much. I would much rather fill my head with knowledge, concepts and ideas than drop down into my emotions. But ,being a big part of the curriculum, it was not an option. And even with all of that experience I still use my breath to keep me safe. AND I use my breath to help me heal.

Meditation and Yoga are two great ways to do conscious breathing but don’t limit yourself to just those times. Try practicing deep breathing throughout your day. Notice how it feels. See if you can become aware of how you use your breath to either relax or shut down. What kind of breathing do you typically have? Chest breathing? Shallow breathing? Belly breathing? Do you hold your breath on the inhale or exhale? See if you can notice how you breath and start to play with it.

Conscious Breathing…one free and easy thing you can do to improve your health and well being. Give it a try.

Lori Barnett