You can go about three weeks without food, three days without water, and three minutes without air. This precious air we breathe, day in and day out, we probably hardly ever pay attention to.
The conscious breath is an amazing thing. Physically, the act of drawing air in and out of the body delivers oxygen which provides basic building blocks our bodies need to survive. It helps kill bacteria, and it fuels the cells that make up our body's defenses against viruses and other invaders. We could not function without it.
Despite the fact that it is a true necessity of life, I am not sure I ever paid too much attention to my breath other than noticing how out of breath I was when racing one of my kids upon a challenge, or doing a crash course in ramping up my cardio workout. It was when I started practicing yoga and in a place where I couldn’t go anywhere that I started to take conscious note of my breath. On my mat, listening to my instructor guide me to breathe in and out, I learned to connect breath with movement as we moved through pose to pose. I became much more aware of drawing air in and out of the body and appreciating what that air is doing to keep me alive.
Over time I began to call on this practice of pausing and taking a minute to pay attention to my inhale and exhale. Being in the present moment, being right here, right now, took my mind off of whatever thoughts were troubling or causing me anxiety. It drew me back and let me remember that I can only control what I can control and worrying was not going to accomplish anything.
I have become most thankful and appreciative of this physical action of breathing. Not only does it bring my physical body life, but by pausing and becoming aware of the inhale and the exhale, it gives my mind a chance for new life. Being aware of my breath gives me the ability to be here right now, to recognize thoughts or worries that do not serve me and to let them go. It brings life back to the person I am meant to be.
Michelle is the owner of a curious mind, she is loving life's journey and takes every opportunity to learn about how people can create the space they need to live life to the fullest.
The Gift of Breathing