We tend to notice our breath when immersed in water, especially when under water. I recall times as a child feeling “out of breath” while swimming and anticipating “holding my breath” under water. It was hard to ignore the sensation, the sound, in the chest, throat, and nose.
Breath is life, yet it’s easy to lose our connection with it. It happens outside our awareness. We breathe automatically, as part of our autonomic nervous system, yet we do have some conscious control of it. (it’s the only part of the nervous system we can control).
When life is stressful, we can use our breath to stay calm and connected. We can learn to deepen it. When we breathe deep into our core (belly), we move our energy into our bodies’ wisdom centers.
A simple way to reconnect with our breath is to be still, and take our awareness to it.
Once connected we can deepen our breath with the practice of belly breathing.
I’ll outline the practice here for you now.
Bring your awareness to your breath. You likely sense it in your nose and mouth, maybe your chest. On your next inhale, allow your belly to release outward, and let the belly rise. Yes, let your belly relax out on the inhale. You can place your hand on your belly and feel it rise. Then on the exhale it pulls back gently toward the spine. That’s it. Try it again. Inhale let the belly rise. Exhale it drops back. This is a simple yet powerful practice. Practice doing belly breaths before bed or as you go about your day. Over time you’ll feel it happen naturally.
You may not see breathing as part of a weight loss strategy, but this simple practice to deepen your breath clears a connection to your hunger and satiety. It also lends awareness to stressful thoughts and related cravings. Overall, our health is enhanced with better breathing.
The mind thinks and the body knows, let’s stay connected.