Mindfulness breathing is a therapeutic tool to improve health, well-being, and quality of life.
The term ‘Mindfulness’ means to be able to still the mind with self-awareness, and focus in the present moment without any judgment.
Mindfulness breathing includes breathing and body scanning techniques to learn to listen to the body feelings, to learn how to process emotions, and to manage stress.
The daily practice of mindfulness breathing rewires the brain from automatic reactions of stresses, such worrying about the future, to more calming behaviors including a deeper awareness of the present moment.
What is Mindfulness Breathing?
Mindfulness Breathing is the ability to slow down the breathing pattern, and to be aware of any physical and emotional changes that occur during the breathing, without judgment.
Does the Exhalation has to be the same length as the Inhalation?
In mindfulness breathing, the main focus is longer exhalations. Longer exhalations of 6 seconds and more activate the parasympathetic response by producing a sense of calmness in mind and body.
Should I Expand my Chest or my Belly during the Exhalation?
You should expand the tummy during inhalation. Have you see how babies breathe? That is right! They naturally practice abdominal breathing. This is the way you should relearn to breath to calm your mind and body.
If you notice your breathing now, you will see that you are expanding your chest. This means your body is using the sympathetic system and is in alertness for fight, flight or freeze.
What are the Benefits of Mindfulness Breathing?
· More Mental Clarity
· More Energy
· Improved Self-esteem
· Ability to Cope with Stressful Situations in a Calmer Manner
· Better Sleep
· Reduce Stress and Anxiety
· Ability to Cope with Pain during painful medical procedures
Studies have shown that individuals who practice daily mindfulness meditation have been associated with lower rating of depression, and anxiety.
How to Practice Mindfulness Meditation?
Find a quite place that is warm, and is not bright.
Start by sitting comfortable in a chair, or cross-legged on a yoga mat if you prefer.
Close your eyes, breath deep and slow.
Scan your body starting from your head. Make yourself taller while you are Tucking your chin in and relax your shoulders.
Put your hands on your lap with palms facing up.
Make sure that your feet are touching the floor, and your knees are at 90 degrees angle if you are sitting on a chair
Feel your belly expand when you inhale and feel your tummy flatten when you exhale.
With each inhalation we receive life and health and with each exhalation we release tension, and negative emotions.
As you inhale, hold the breath for a few seconds and listen to your body feelings and sensations.
Then release the breath and let go your fears, pain, and negative experiences.
Don’t try too hard, just focus on feeling and listening.
Continue your breathing for as long as you wish.