The Power of Proper Breathing

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Do you know what is most important to you on this earth? Whenever I asked this question during my session or anytime, some people said money, some said food, some said family, and some said water. But nobody’s attention goes towards proper breathing. People take breathing for granted. You may survive a few days without other things, but breathing is so important that you cannot live without it for even a few seconds.

Why do people ignore it even though it is so important? There are also some reasons why people ignore proper breathing.

Why people ignore proper breathing?

I think people ignore proper breathing for 2 reasons:

Automatic Nature: The nature of breathing is automatic. Our body breathes in autopilot mode. Which continues for 24 hours as long as there is life. That’s why people think about what to be conscious of this.

Unseen: The second reason is that oxygen is unseen. It is neither seen nor felt. Because of this also it is ignored.

Importantance of proper breathing

A question may also be coming to your mind that when breathing is an automatic process, then why give so much emphasis on breathing or why worry about how to inhale and exhale? What happens if you do breathing properly? Despite the inherently automatic nature of breathing, people need to learn how to breathe properly. Proper Breathing can benefits both mind and body.

Relieves Stress & Reduces Anxiety: Many times when people are in pain or feel stressed, they do not realize that their breathing pattern has changed. They often hold their breath for short periods or take rapid, shallow breaths from the chest instead of the diaphragm. Shallow breathing can lead to increased heart rate, high blood pressure, muscle tension, and the release of stress hormones into the bloodstream. If you learn to control your breath, then no stress, worry can harm you in life.

Mindfulness: There is a very direct relationship between breath and State of mind. When people afraid and are concerned, their breathing becomes shallow and rapid. Changing breathing rate automatically changes the state of mind to negative. But when you deep breathe and control your breath it changes your state of mind from negative to positive. Actively changing breathing rate can actually alter the mood states.

Diseases Free Body: The foundation of a healthy body is a healthy bloodstream, the system that carries oxygen and nutrients to all the cells in your body. If you have a healthy blood circulatory system, you are going to live a long, healthy life and your body will be free from diseases. The control button of that system is the proper breathing.

Proper Breathing Exercise

Taking a proper and deep breath is probably the easiest exercise. Some breathing exercise that will help you to relax your mind and body.

Pranayama

Pranayama is simultaneously a physical-health practice, a mental health practice, and a meditation. Pranayama makes your whole life better. The breath is the bridge between the body and the mind.

Some Pranayamas are following:

Anulom Vilom Pranayama: Sit, in a meditative position. Close your eyes and close your right nostril with the thumb of your right hand. Breathe deeply through the left open nostril until your diaphragm is filled with oxygen. Hold your breath for a few seconds. Now close the left nostril with the ring finger of the right hand and remove the thumb from the right nostril. Then exhale slowly through the right nostril. Then, inhale through the right nostril and exhale through the left nostril. Repeat this process 8 to 10 times.

Bhramari Pranayama: Sit in a comfortable position. Close your eyes by fingers and ear by thumb. Inhale deeply through your nose and hold for a few seconds then exhale slowly making a sound like a humming bee. You can make the sound of om also. Practice it 8 to 10 times.

Bhastrika Pranayama: Bhastrika Pranayama also involves inhalation and exhalation but its pattern is different. In this, you breathe deeply and release it. You take a deep breath in through your nose and then exhale forcefully through your nose. This process is slightly faster than the other breathing process. Repeat this 8 to 10 times.

Proper Breathing Pattern

A certain proportion is involved in this breathing exercise. In this, you breathe for one second, hold for four seconds, exhale for two seconds. You can increase this count as per your wish. As you inhale for four seconds, you will hold for sixteen and exhale for eight seconds. Breathe in through the nose and exhale through the mouth.

Why do you exhale twice as long as you inhale? That’s when you eliminate toxins through your lymphatic system. Why hold on four times as long? This way you can fully oxygenate the blood and activate your lymphatic system. When you breathe, you should start deep in your abdomen, like a vacuum cleaner that gets rid of all the toxins in the blood system.

Simple Deep Breathing

The breath is the bridge between the body and the mind. If you can not do the above exercise at least do simple deep breathing. Just inhale deeply through your nose, hold for a few seconds and exhale through your nose or mouth. Deep breathing oxygenate the brain and body. You feel better after deep breathing. After deep breathing, it becomes easier to think even in difficult situations.

No food or pill in the world can do that for you that can proper breathing. Whether you exercise or not, take at least 10 deep breaths, at least three times a day.

Love,

Saurabh Goel

Read more on Yoga Benefits for Mental Health


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