Friday, March 19, 2010

Living Life One Breath At A Time

Today I'm breathing through the moments. Sounds funny I know since in fact we breathe through every moment...In fact, breathing provides the proof of life. But how many times are we conscious in our breathing? focused on it? aware of its in and out, its up and down, its expansion and contraction. The breath when simply watched provides a beautiful metaphor for life. Sometimes it is dramatic and deep, others soft and barely perceivable. But always it is there.

What is your breath like today? Is it fast to represent the fearful thoughts you are thinking? or slow,deep and steady to reflect your sense of deep relaxation? Is it shallowly traveling through your upper chest for awhile and then suddenly sharp to catch up with itself? What does it tell you about how your life is going? Where your thoughts are taking you? What your feelings are showing?


We take it for granted, yet, it is our barometer for living and in Alanon, when a newcomer or an oldcomer gets completely consumed by an upsetting thought, we ask them: How important is it? Does it affect your breathing? (Usually, though it may quicken the breath, the thought doesn't end it) When the newcomer says, 'No, I'm still breathing.' We say, "Then it's not that important.

So often, it is not what is happening in our lives that has the potential to kill us, but the way we are thinking about what is happening.

The mind is a funny thing. We think we are tricking it when we multi-task, but truly, the mind can only think about one thing at a time and so mult-tasking is really one-thing-after-another-only-very-quickly-tasking.

If we choose to, we can slow down our brains and the torrent of thoughts flowing through it by paying attention to our breath. Watch it as it moves in and out.Watch its clarity, its zig zags, its wiggle waggles as it moves into and out of our bodies.

And watch how, when you are paying attention to your breath, your mind is consumed by that and has very little energy if any to pay to whatever anxious thoughts or feelings seemed so very important only seconds ago.

Watch your breath, and when you find you have forgotten, bring your mind back to your breath. It's a practice to strengthen your ability to focus, to relax, to simply BE.

Send me a note to let me know your experience with this practice. Taken together with other inner work it can be truly transformative.

Thanks for reading!

Coach Bev

Beverly Buncher, Family Recovery Coach

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I love reading your blog. Thank you.