Using your breathing to change how you feel
I had a singing lesson recently from the lovely Rosie at @happyinharmony1 and discovered something that blew my mind. Did you know you can expand your ribs without breathing in? Or that you can breathe into the back of your ribs, expanding your capacity way beyond the more usual breath in that focuses to the front/middle? If not, me either!
These discoveries have really set me off on a different track doing mindful breathing this week. It’s been so interesting to notice the different sensations when my attention is focused in a different place. I find it endlessly fascinating how the way we breathe can change our emotional and physical state. I used to love watching my babies breathing, lying on their backs, when they were small. The way their whole tummy would fill up and fall back, naturally taking a full breath was entrancing, when, I wondered, did I stop doing that naturally?
Altering the rhythm of our breath has a significant effect on the way we feel, and experience ourselves. How much of your lung capacity are you using? Are you breathing through your nose, or mouth, or a combination of the two? Are your in breaths and out breaths evenly matched or is one longer? Do you pause before breathing in, or breathing out, or neither, or both?
It can be tremendously useful to experiment with different ways of breathing and noticing the impact on your bodymind as you do. Let me know what you discover if you choose to experiment.