Breath Awareness Meditation: Promoting Better Health and WellnessMay 13, 2021
Have you ever been so stressed and anxious that you couldn't breathe?
Have you noticed that your day-to-day life is affected by your emotions?
Unfortunately, this is a common problem in our society.
When we are stressed or anxious, our breathing becomes shallow and irregular.
Shallow breathing can lead to many problems, including heart disease, anxiety attacks, insomnia, high blood pressure, and even stroke!
Breath awareness meditation is an easy way to reconnect with your body and promote better breathing through mindfulness of the breath. It's as simple as taking a few deep breaths each day as you observe how it feels in your nose, mouth, and belly.
The more you practice this type of mindfulness meditation, the better you will become at controlling your stress levels by being in the moment instead of letting yourself get carried away by stressful thoughts about the past or future.
You'll also start to notice that you have more energy throughout the day because you're getting more oxygen into your blood.
In this blog post, we will discuss how breath awareness meditation can help people with breathing problems by reconnecting them with their bodies and promoting better breathing through mindful awareness of the breath.
What is breath awareness meditation?
Focusing on the breath is one of the oldest and most-used meditation techniques in Eastern and Western practices.
When we can maintain this focus, we can become more aware of our emotions and any other thoughts that arise without getting carried away with them or judgmental about them.
This awareness helps us make healthier choices for ourselves in our daily life.
The breath is the most accessible place to focus our mind, as it's always with us and never leaves us.
To be able to notice how we're breathing, there are a few steps that need to happen first:
We have to slow down.
For just a moment and become aware of what we're doing now and bring your attention back to the breath (inhaling and exhaling).
We have to be aware.
If you don't know where your attention may go next, bring your attention back to the physical body sensation related to either inhaling or exhaling. Notice things like if the air feels cool going into your body through one nostril versus another nostril during inhalation--or if it feels warmer when exiting from an open mouth at the end of exhalation.
We have to be curious.
Curiosity is the critical ingredient for breath awareness, and it's also what drives our ability to experience new things in life that can enrich us if we allow them.
See this as a way of cultivating curiosity or playfulness about your breathing--or anything else you might want to explore more deeply through meditation.
Is there resistance? Please don't fight with resistance; work around it by going past it (for example, breathe into the right nostril while trying not to inhale from the left).
Awareness will soon follow suit!
Meditation practices should not only help you relax, but they should also be fun.
How to do a breath awareness meditation
Follow this guided meditation into your breath awareness meditation practice to experience the health benefits now!
Find a comfortable position and close your eyes, or you can lie down if that feels more relaxing for you.
Focus on breathing in through the nostrils with an open mouth and then exhale through both nostrils when ready--try not to force it or take too many deep breaths since this may cause hyperventilation.
Also, it is natural if your mind wanders, recenter your mind, and go back to focusing on your breathing.
This practice is to cultivate an awareness of your body and the present moment.
When thoughts come up, observe them without judgment while continuing to focus on the breath:
1. Sit comfortably with legs crossed or folded Indian style (if physically able)
2. Close your eyes
3. Focus on breathing in slowly through the nostrils with an open mouth
Notice how each inhalation fills your chest cavity and abdomen as they expand outward from underneath the lungs, as well as how each exhalation leaves your body and chest cavity
4. Breathe out slowly
Feel the rising and release of tension and sensations as you practice breathing.
Continue to breathe at this pace for about five minutes or longer if desired.
Intersperse natural pauses during your meditation practice by checking in with yourself :
what are you noticing?
How does it feel?
Are there any thoughts or emotions that come up while meditating?
The most significant benefit of focusing on your breath is the self-awareness that you develop. Being aware of the feelings happening in your whole body, from your feet to the crown of your head, promotes a sense of mindful self-compassion.
Benefits of Breathing Meditation
Mindful breathing helps support healthy living in many different ways.
It can help with pain management and
It also supports weight loss because it allows you to notice when you're experiencing hunger cues so that these cues don't trigger an overeating response.
Mindful breathing is a powerful tool for self-awareness and clarity. In addition, it helps develop the skill of attuning more closely to your sensations throughout both body and mind to foster greater peace within yourself.
The benefits of breathing meditation are vast: from better sleep quality, improved digestion, decreased symptoms associated with PMS or menopause, even lower blood pressure.
This practice also helps reduce anxiety and stress levels while increasing relaxation.
When we think about our breath, it highlights how much energy we waste on worrying or entertaining unimportant thoughts that distract us from being fully present at the moment.
Breathing exercises help calm down an overactive mind by focusing all attention on one essential task: breathing itself.
In addition to these benefits, meditating has been scientifically proven to increase creativity and make people happier overall!
It's worth a try, right? Now get out there and breathe deeply...
Tips for doing a good breath awareness meditation
Breath meditation can be done throughout your day.
Again, the key to getting the health benefits of this mindfulness practice is to do it consistently.
Here are a few ideas you may find helpful:
When you go for a walk, focus on your breath rather than the scenery.
Notice how every time your footsteps down, you take in and let out air with each step.
Follow this rhythm as you walk and notice what happens to both your breathing and thoughts when you try this technique.
After about ten minutes of walking meditation or so, return to thinking about other things besides just the sensation of breathing or movement, such as noticing people around you or listening to sounds from nature like birds singing.
When you are feeling anxious, frustrated or mad.
When you feel anxious, frustrated, or mad, etcetera can be a good technique for calming your nerves in those moments of high emotion. This would also be an excellent opportunity to practice deep breathing techniques with mindfulness as well!
This is a great way to return your focus on what's happening now, rather than worrying about the past or future.
So what are you waiting for?
The most common thing people report when they start breathing practices is that their mind starts focusing less on thoughts. This is because it has something else occupying its attention (the sensation of breath).
And once our minds stop thinking so much, we are more likely to tap into the present moment- and help us into a calm and peaceful state.
Breath awareness will help you see what is happening in your life with fresh eyes because it reduces habitual thoughts limiting your perspective.
Breath meditation can be practiced anywhere
Keep it simple by starting out. Take deep breathes and focus on ab object to maintain attention more easily during this mindful practice of breath meditation.
A final tip for breath meditation is that it doesn't have to be done in silence. It can also be practiced with calming music playing softly in the background and other repetitive sounds like waves or rain falling outside of windows. This helps create an environment conducive to being able to relax and create a more peaceful mind.
Have you focused on your breath today?
If not, now might be a good time to start.
This may seem like a new-age idea, but it's actually been around for centuries in Eastern practices. Moreover, it is being found to have some excellent benefits.
The practice of focusing your breath has grown in popularity because people realize the many health benefits they can get from focusing their attention on their breathing.
So if you want to focus more on mindfulness or reduce stress, this could be an easy way to do that.
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