Breathing... We do this activity constantly. As human beings, we need to breathe to stay alive, but there are other reasons as well. We can also use breathing as a relaxation technique. According to Dr. Andrew Weil M.D., in his book titled Healthy Aging, breathwork is important because it
"offers the possibiliy of using the conscious mind and involuntary nerves, including the balance between sympathetic and parasympathetic activity.
"What does this really mean? To sum it up in a nutshell, breathing can calm one's body, mind and soul. By practicing breathing techniques throughout your day, you can control mood swings, irritation, and anxiety. You have to breathe anyway, so you might as well try it out, plus breathing (for most of us) is totally free! Here Is the technique that Dr. Weil shares with his readers in that same book. Try it out and let me know what you think!
1. Place the tip of your tongue against the ridge behind and above your front teeth and keep it there through the whole exercise.
2. Exhale completely through your mouth, making a "whoosh" sound.
3. Inhale deeply and quietly through the nose to a count of 4 (with your mouth closed).
4. Hold your breath for a count of 7.
5. Exhale audibly through your mouth to a count of 8.
6. Repeat steps 3,4, and 5 for a total of 4 breaths.
Check out Dr. Weils website to learn more!