As I sat down to write today, I knew the subject I wanted to cover but the title and content were eluding me. Thanks to the song Just Breathe by Anna Nalick, which was featured in the movie A Lot Like Love and the TV show Grey’s Anatomy, I was clear on the title and the content. We will talk about my romantic comedy watching habits another time. Anyway, my intent is to bring to light different breathing techniques and ideas to you. It won’t be a deep dive into any of them but rather to give you resources to check out. Being that breathing is essential to our life, we may as well put some practice into it. Here are three of my favorites.
This form of breathing has been practiced by Buddhist monks for thousands of years and most recently has been popularized by Wim Hof. Tummo Meditation is also known as Breath of Fire and provides amazing benefits to those that practice it daily. Some of those benefits include improved health, boosting your memory, increased concentration and help in removing inner obstacles. I use Tummo every day for 5 to 7 minutes to get clarity for my day and to feel energized. Do a google search on how to perform this technique and give it a try.
For those of you with a singing or athletic background this style should be familiar. Think about those two areas for a second and ask yourself “Why would they use this type of breathing”? The answer is simple, that breathing through your belly is far more effective than chest breathing. Your body receives more oxygen and hence able to perform better. Some of the benefits of this style of breathing is lowering your blood pressure and heart rate, reduce your stress level, and slows your breathing (so many benefits to slowing down breathing alone). For some reason chest breathing comes more natural to us, so use this as a reminder to breathe through your tummy and feel it expand.
Breathing Through Your Nostrils
How do you normally breathe? Prior to reading the book Breath: The New Science of a Lost Art by James Nestor, I really had never thought of it outside of my normal breathwork exercises. What I came to realize is that I am predominantly a mouth breather through the day and most certainly while sleeping. Nestor does a lot of interesting challenges, experiments, and research for his book and the overwhelming evidence is how little we all know how to breathe. Benefits of nostril breathing is reducing anxiety, relaxes your mind and body, reduces snoring (yep this is profound), and promotes overall well-being. It’s a fascinating read and entertaining at the same time.
Breathing is a part of our lives but how well do we do it? Arguably breathing in air is the most instinctive activity that a human being does. Why not practice breathing to get better at it? The breathing ideas we talked about are easy and don’t take any more time than your normal schedule allows (ok, 5 minutes for Tummo). Truly I hope these ideas make you stop and think about something you do every minute of every day. Let’s Go Win exists to inspire people to live their best lives and what better place to start than the most basic need we all have.