A simple introduction to mindful breathing - in one minute a day for 5 days.
So we’ll start with the basics. It’s simply to take pauses today to bring your full attention to the breathing, just as it is. See where you feel it most – at the nose, the lungs or in the movement of the belly. There’s no need to change it. Just observe what the body does for us.
To help keep your attention on the breath, it can help to use words – just saying to yourself, silently, ‘breathing in’ on the in-breath, and ‘breathing out’ on the out-breath. By the way, it helps to keep the spine upright so that you stay alert, but relaxed. See if you can take at least three pauses today to do this.
Another simple technique to help with concentration, is to count the breaths. Just count up to 7 on each out-breath, then back down again. If you lose count or the mind wanders, don’t be self critical, just carry on.
Hopefully you’ve made a start on simple mindful breathing techniques. So today you can start to make a change in a way that’s scientifically proven to reduce stress quickly. All you do, is to lengthen the out-breath. So as you bring attention to the physical sensation of breathing, you deliberately make the out breath longer and deeper than the in-breath.
Today we’re going to go further with yesterday’s longer outbreath technique. Try this today whenever a stress trigger hits you. There are three parts to it. First you lengthen the outbreath, but you also smile, and feel your feet in connection with the floor.
Try this now for just three breaths – the longer outbreath the smile and the feet connected to the floor…