Breathing meditation reduces anxiety, stress, bring peace & harmony and help to maintain your mindfulness.
How do I cultivate mindfulness? Well, breathing meditation is the easiest way to mindfulness. Breathing happens all the time in the background, without our notice. Since it is effortless, breathing is the most natural focal point to anchor our mind.
- Our mind and body are not in harmony, most of the time.
- Mind wonders all the time.
- Breathing is an anchor to discipline our mind.
- Breathing meditation magically brings harmony between mind and body.
We can practice breathing meditation anytime, anywhere. It can be your home, office or else during commute. Hence it fits nicely to our daily life. Here are the three simple steps to practice:
Step 1: Sit in a comfortable position, and, close your eyes.
Step 2: Take a deep breath. Take your attention to your nostrils. Observe the in-flow of air, passing through the bridge of the nose.
Step 3: Now, observe the outflow of air passing through the bridge of the nose.
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Repeat these three steps until you recognize the normal rhythm of breathing in & breathing out.
How does this lead to mindfulness?
Mindfulness is our ability to maintain awareness in the present moment. In other words, our body can be engaged in some action, in this very moment. Yet, our mind may be wandering in a different place. If we can bring awareness of the mind into the movement of the body, then we are mindful. (Yes, it is that simple!).
In breathing meditation, our body is executing inhale & exhale. Just imagine; when you are breathing in, air enters through your nostrils, passes through the air passage, then enters to your lungs. All these are components of the body.
And then we bring the awareness of our mind to follow this action, carefully. So, we mindfully observe the breathing in and breathing out.
What not to do in breathing meditation?
1. Do not be forceful. Breathing shall be natural.
In the early stages, we tend to force our breath, assuming that is the best way to maintain our attention. Yet, that is not the right practice. That can lead to chest pain and subsequent stress. Instead, you shall aim to keep the breathing process as natural as possible.
2. Breathing in & out, both shall be through the nostrils.
Sometimes, early-stage meditators tend to inhale through the nose and exhale through the mouth. This practice is not the right practice and distract your mind. Complete breathing process (i.e. both inhale & exhale), shall be maintained through the nostrils.
3. Your attention shall be on the bridge of the nose.
As the breathing process involves various muscles and body components such as chest, tummy etc. our mind tends to struggle not knowing where to maintain the focus. Nose shall be the focal point. Then again, to make it more precise, your awareness shall, neither be inside of the nasal cavity nor the surrounding area of the nose. It shall be maintained consistently on the bridge of the nose.
How to do breathing meditation in three simple stepsTweet
How long should I practice?
Start with five minutes. You may not recognize any outcome in less than five minutes. Then gradually expand it to fifteen minutes and beyond.
If you have a busy life, five-minute breathing in every hour would be a great practice.
For more about consistent practice read this blog:
What benefits would I gain?
If you practice meditation consistently daily basis, your distracting thoughts will gradually subside, and peace and harmony will set in the mind. This practice slowly builds more positive emotions, such as loving-kindness, happiness.
The negative emotions such as anxiety, fear, stress fade away, as our mind and body align. With improved focus, our productivity (efficiency & effectiveness) will be enhanced.
In this blog, you have learned three basic steps about breathing meditation and how they relate to mindfulness. And then how they benefit your daily life.
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