This is probably the most common question I am asked since most people I meet have never heard of breathwork. But they are curious and open to anything that will allow them to be more present to themselves and more alive and connected.
THE POWER OF OUR BREATH
We have all been born with the capacity to breathe a full, free-flowing breath. With every breath we take in life-giving oxygen and we release toxins and carbon dioxide. If we stopped breathing we would die. However it is a little known fact that our breath has the capacity to do much more than just keep us alive. When we breathe a full breath in a deliberate and conscious way, our breath reveals to us a power to heal, to feel and to be connected beyond our greatest expectations.
The technique itself is very simple. For an hour or so we lie down, and we breathe a more full and connected breath than we normally do, without stopping or pausing. And we give our full attention to our breath. We ‘follow’ our breath into our body. The intention to not to control our breath (as in Pranayama) but to allow our breath to take charge.
WAKENING UP TO THE BODY
What starts to happen is that our body soon comes to life. It’s like as if it has been waiting for this opportunity and is speaking to us. Our only job is to listen and feel and be aware of what is happening. The extra oxygen along with the life-force or ‘chi’ energy of the breath causes changes to our body and we move beyond what we know with our rational mind, and we begin to experience our life, in our body.
CHOOSING TO FEEL EVERYTHING
This might come in the form of physical sensations like tingling, the feel of energy flowing through you body or the feeling of lightness or heaviness. Or often it is an emotional experience. You might be surprised at the variety and intensity of the emotions that you feel, from bliss to deep despair. This is because it is our body, not our mind that holds the memory of every experience we have ever had, from the experience of our actual birth to the present moment. We hold all the unfinished business of our life in our body in the form of tensions and difficult emotions, recurring patterns of behaviour, habits and addictions. When we breathe our body in its wisdom presents us with whatever it is that we have been holding back or avoiding. It tells us what we need to know and it releases whatever we are ready to let go of.
PHYSICAL, EMOTIONAL AND SPIRITUAL HEALING
The results is healing on many levels, physical, emotional and spiritual. As we reclaim the parts of us that were lost or forgotten we get a deep sense of peace and connection. We remember who we truly are. As the walls we have built up dissolve and melt away, insights about ourselves and our lives come flowing in, we receive answers to questions and a sense of what is possible for us. We are left with a deep sense of relaxation and a sense of wellbeing which we take with us into our daily life.