“Breath is the bridge which connects life to consciousness, which unites your body to your thoughts. Whenever your mind becomes scattered, use your breath as the means to take hold of your mind again.” – Thich Nhat Hanh
Imagine if breathing didn’t happen by itself. That WE had to do the breathing and constantly be aware of it in order to live. Imagine how much more we would appreciate being alive and how present we would be all the time. We would have no need to worry about the past or the future, because the only thing that would matter would be this moment, to stay present, to breathe, to be, to live.
We all know that sigh we make when we feel tired or sad. Same with that deep breath we take to build op courage right before we’re about to do something exiting or scary. Why do you think that is? It’s to bring our mind back to where our body is. It brings us back into the present. It’s our body’s way of telling us that we need to pay attention and focus.
A lot of us are too busy and caught up in everyday life and we forget to take good care of ourselves. The amount of people with stress is higher than ever before, because of the constant pressure we and society puts on us, and we don’t do anything about it before it’s too late. Stress comes into our lives when we have too much on our mind. In other words, we are spending too much time in the future.
I want to try something with you for a second. It’s an easy exercise, but it’s not going to work unless you actually do it. It doesn’t matter if you’re standing, laying or sitting down as long as you feel comfortable.
Now, what i want you to do, is to close your eyes and take five very deep breaths. While you do this, really pay attention to your body. Feel the air filling up your lungs with each breath. Once you inhale, hold it for a second or two and then slowly exhale. Do this five times and don’t continue reading before you’re done.
Okay, so now I want you to ask you a question. What were you thinking about while you were doing the exercise? Did you think about work? Did you think about school, homework, tomorrow, or some mistake that you made a long time ago? No. No you didn’t. You know why? You were in the present moment. You were focusing on breathing. You were in the NOW. Maybe for the first time in a long time. Welcome back.
The body lives in the present moment; the mind, however, sails between past and future like a ghost ship – Dan Millman
Focusing on our breathing is one of the best ways to reconnect with the present. Our body is always in the present, however our mind is rarely with our body and we tend to focus more on the future or the past. When we focus on our breathing our mind reconnects with our body. In this state there are absolutely no problems. Only situations that needs our attention once in a while and we deal with it and move on. Once you learn to focus on your breathing you’ll notice that it’ll be hard to think about anything else while you do it. Everything will seem lighter and you will be able to notice the signals that your body is sending you, and you’ll be more likely to act upon them. If you are mindful of your breathing you will not feel as stressed at work or in life. There’ll only be the task at hand in the moment. Give it your full attention and when it’s completed you will be ready for the next one. You cannot be two places at once, stay with your body.
The exorcise i showed you before, also comes in very handy in situations where you feel like you’re about to do something you shouldn’t. Everyone of us has some bad habits. And everyone of us have that little voice inside our head that tells us that it’s bad for us and that we shouldn’t be doing it, but we tend to ignore that voice for whatever reason. It can be anything. Smoking, drinking, procrastinating when you have something important to do, eating bad food, complaining, spending money on unnecessary stuff, writing your ex when you’re drunk. Whatever.
The point is, right before you do it, stop and focus on your breathing. It’ll reconnect the mind with the body and you’ll feel that you don’t need anything else. You’ll know that your mind and body are good right now and that if you do what you’re about to do, it won’t be good for either. That little voice in your head will come forward and make you think twice before you cause any damage to your mind, your body and/or the people around you.
Another exercise is to simply take a walk. Preferably in nature or some place that you really enjoy. Again, the point is to focus on your breathing. As mentioned, it’s hard to think of anything else while you’re doing it. Find a three, flower, a building or anything else to focus on. While you look at it, really focus on your breathing. Try to let go of anything you would identify it with. No names, no labels, no comparison, no judgements. When you do this, whatever you look at become alive. You’re bringing it with you into the present, into existence, and you become one. In this way, a three or even a building can be the most beautiful thing you’ve ever experienced.
To sum up; Breathe and feel your body, regain control over life and stay in the present, always.
Feel free to like and share if you enjoyed it, and please let me know what you think and if I can improve anything.
Make a great day