Is it just me or is there a LOT going on? Meetings, dinners, events. We’re traveling again. My mind is racing. Is yours?
Tonight’s breathing exercise is a fabulous way to calm the eff down so you can easily fall asleep (and, hopefully, stay that way).
Alternate Nostril Breathing
A wonderfully simple breathwork, Alternate Nostril Breathing gives you a lot of calming, relaxing bang for your buck. Various research papers help us understand that this breathing technique:
- Lowers stress overall, specifically on your cardiovascular system
- Improves lung capacity and respiratory edurance
- Lowers your heart rate
- Can help clear your sinus area for clearer breathing
- Allows for greater focus
- Calms the mind for better sleep
And, it’s super simple: just sit, use your fingers to gently open and close your nostrils as you breathe. Voila!
Let’s give it a try:
- Let’s try this lying in or seated near our beds (efficiency!).
- As you arrive in your seated or prone position, take a pause to remember how awesome you are and how much I appreciate you.
- Now, place your first two fingers of your right hand on your forehead so that your thumb and ring finger are on the sides of your nostrils.
- Gently press your thumb to close your nostril on the right side.
- Breathe in thru your left nostril. Then, close that nostril with your ring finger.
- Lift your thumb a smidge and breathe out thru your right nostril.
- Breathe in thru your right nostril. Again, gently press your thumb to your right nostril to close it.
- Lift your ring finger and breathe out thru your left nostril.
- Pause, then breathe in thru your left nostril.
- As before, apply pressure with your ring finger to close your left nostril.
- Open your right nostril and breath out. Then breath in and apply your thumb.
- Lift your ring finger and breathe out thru your left nostril. Pause, then breathe in via your left nostril and close it with your ring finger.
- Now just hold your nose!
- Ha, ha … for real, that’s it: you simply repeat the process of opening breathing in/closing/opening breathing out then in/closing as few or as many times as you need.
- And if you get it jumbled that’s great … it’s only breathwork. Your body will continue breathing on its own anyway 🙂
See ya tomorrow!