3 Deep Breathing Exercises

Meditation is said to decrease stress, improve mental clarity and energy, and foster creativity.

Some of the most successful innovators in history have been dedicated meditators. Meditation is an excellent tool to incorporate into your daily routine, especially during times of distress. When you’re going through a breakup, work challenge, or dealing with a physical illness, meditation can focus your internal lens and bring you greater clarity and peace.

Meditation has been scientifically proven to mitigate addiction, depression, anxiety, stress, cognitive function, and even eating disorders.

The practice is also said to balance hormone levels, improve cell health, and reduce blood pressure.

Even if meditation interests you, sitting down with yourself and confronting your own thoughts can be intimidating. So how can you incorporate meditation into your lifestyle and reap all of the wonderful benefits?

 

  1. IDENTIFY YOUR WHY

Why do you want to practice meditation? How do you want it to make you feel? What do you want to get out of it? If you’re clear on your goals and expectations of your practice, you’re more likely to see the benefits.

 

  1. START SMALL

Even a few minutes of meditation can have a great impact on you. Start with a few minutes a day and work your way up to 20-30 minutes if it suits you.

 

  1. PICK A MODALITY

Maybe you prefer a guided meditation to give you more structure, or you like to repeat a mantra in your head. Experiment to find out what works for you, and don’t limit yourself to what your friends are doing or what’s popular.

 

  1. STICK TO IT

Even if you only choose to practice a few minutes per day, establish a routine. Consistency is key – a few minutes each day is more effective than one hour once a week.

 

  1. BE A JOINER

If you enjoy group settings, consider a group meditation class that may allow you to feel more connected and engaged.

Give these a try:

SOFT BELLY BREATHING~

Practice in bed in the morning or evening with your knees bent. If sitting in a chair, sit upright so you’re able to support your own spine.

Place your hands on your belly, thumbs at the navel and fingertips below. Allow the belly to expand under your fingertips on the inhale and to contract on the exhale.

Envision an ocean wave – the belly expands on the inhale, the wave rises; the navel contracts on the exhale, the wave returns to the ocean.

If you aren’t getting any movement, press your fingertips gently into your belly so you know it’s contracting on the exhale. Release the press on the inhale.

As the expansion and contraction becomes more natural, focus on keeping a rhythmic breathing pattern where the inhale and exhale are equal.

Soft belly breathing can reduce tension in the neck and shoulders, massage the heart, and activate the parasympathetic nervous system (responsible for rest and digest) through the phrenic nerve that runs down both sides of the diaphragm.

 ALTERNATE NOSTRIL BREATHING~ This is a great exercise for those with adrenal issues or insomnia.

This breathing technique settles the mind and can be performed mentally if you’re suffering from sinus issues.

You’ll use the Vishnu Mudra hand placement for this exercise. Take your hand and fold down second and third fingers. Use the thumb and fourth finger on the flair of your nostril, gently.

Sit tall, inner rotate your thighs, and return to soft belly and rhythmic breathing. Use the right hand in Vishnu Mudra. Inhale through both nostrils, gently close right nostril, and exhale left. Inhale left, gently close and exhale right. Repeat. Gradually allow the exhale to become longer than the inhale. Release on an exhale through the left nostril. Repeat for a few minutes.

4-7-8- Breathing~ Breathe in for 4 seconds, hold for 7 seconds, breathe out for 8 seconds. Repeat 4 times.  Practice this each day, once in the morning and once before bed.

GET EVEN HEALTHIER!
Are you curious about how happy good health can make you feel? As a Health Coach I can help you make your own healthy changes. Let’s talk! Schedule an initial complimentary consultation with me today!  717-781-7098 or Transformation@AmandaGoodwin.Biz

 

SOURCES

1.  Meditation Health Benefits: What the Practice Does To Your Body

| http://geti.in/1lwwnxW

  1. Effectiveness of a meditation-based stress reduction program in the treatment of anxiety disorders

http://geti.in/1gvM8cu

3.Mindfulness Meditation for Alcohol Relapse Prevention: A Feasibility Pilot Study

| http://geti.in/1jQ7YH3

4.An Exploratory Study of a Meditation-based Intervention for Binge Eating Disorder

| http://geti.in/1jm3x7H

5.The Effects of Mindfulness Meditation on Cognitive Processes and Affect in Patients with Past Depression

http://geti.in/1gaQ3Li

6.Three-year follow-up and clinical implications of a mindfulness meditation-based stress reduction

intervention in the treatment of anxiety disorders

| http://geti.in/1nRUQnD

7.Functional brain mapping of the relaxation response and meditation

| http://geti.in/1jCzQcx

8.Effects of the transcendental meditation program on adaptive mechanisms: Changes in hormone levels

and responses to stress after 4 months of practice | http://geti.in/1lwwARO