• Create BookmarkCreate Bookmark
  • Create Note or TagCreate Note or Tag
  • PrintPrint
Share this Page URL
Help

Chapter 9. The Balance Hand > SUCCESS CARD 43: Breathe In and Out and Manage Th...

SUCCESS CARD 43: Breathe In and Out and Manage Thoughts

Breathe In and Out

We take breathing for granted. It's something our bodies do naturally, in and out, thousands of times each day. The problem is that many people breathe incorrectly. When asked to take a deep breath, most people will suck in their stomachs (if they're not already holding them in) and raise their shoulders. This kind of shallow, upper chest breathing, can actually lead to hyperventilation. You don't need to be gasping for air to be hyperventilating; you're simply breathing more than the body needs. This can prevent adequate oxygen from reaching your brain and the other cells of your body and can result in physical symptoms resembling panic attacks. Check the quality of your breathing, especially during emotional times. Shallow inhalations and strong exhalations often accompany anger. Fear is partnered with shallow, fast, and irregular breaths. Impatience is associated with short, jerky breaths. Guilt produces a restricted breath. Pay closer attention to how you breathe throughout the next few days and watch for any variations, positive or negative.

Abdominal breathing, also called diaphragmatic breathing, should be the goal of anyone who wants to improve the quality of his or her life; it promotes relaxation, detoxifies the inner organs, and promotes blood flow. The diaphragm is shaped like an upside-down bowl and acts as a partition between the heart and lungs above and all of the other internal organs below. Deep breathing takes advantage of the fact that the lungs are larger at the bottom. When you inhale, the diaphragm is forced downward by the expanding lungs and the stomach protrudes. As you exhale, the lungs empty, the diaphragm relaxes back to its domelike shape, and the stomach contracts. The more the diaphragm can move, the more the lungs can expand, bring in more oxygen, and release more carbon dioxide. You automatically breathe from the abdomen when you lie on your back and usually when you're seated, although this is not necessarily deep breathing. A conscious effort must be made to breathe deeply. The Sherpa guides of the Himalayas are experts at breathing, largely because their very lives depend on it. Each time they breathe, they focus on exhaling completely and expelling every bit of air. This technique creates a richer intake of oxygen for them, which increases their energy and endurance.


PREVIEW

                                                                          

Not a subscriber?

Start A Free Trial


  
  • Creative Edge
  • Create BookmarkCreate Bookmark
  • Create Note or TagCreate Note or Tag
  • PrintPrint