Where is the conflict when the Truth is known,
Where is the disease when the mind is clear,
Where is the death when the breath is controlled,
Therefore, surrender to Yoga.
–Poem by T. Krishnamacharya
As aspiring yogis we recognize the significant mental and physical benefits of breath awareness.
Isn’t it incredible how a little focused attention on an involuntary physical process like breathing can have such an immediate, dramatic, transformative effect on our lives?
So simple an action, yet so easy to overlook when we step off our yoga mats.
With its mind-altering benefits, the breath truly resides at the heart of yoga. Indeed, there’s no better way to bring that amazing yogic feeling into every second of our lives than to reorient our awareness on the simple movement of our breath.
It’s easy to breathe when standing on the yoga mat, but there are so many other times in our lives when a few deep breaths can make all the difference. Here are seven:
- If you feel stressed out and overwhelmed, breathe. It will calm you and release the tensions.
- If you are worried about something coming up, or caught up in something that already happened, breathe. It will bring you back to the present.
- If you are discouraged and have forgotten your purpose in life, breathe. It will remind you about how precious life is, and that each breath in this life is a gift you need to appreciate. Make the most of this gift.
- If you have too many tasks to do, or are scattered during your workday, breathe. It will help bring you into focus, to concentrate on the most important task you need to be focusing on right now.
- If you are spending time with someone you love, breathe. It will allow you to be present with that person, rather than thinking about work or other things you need to do.
- If you are exercising, breathe. It will help you enjoy the exercise, and therefore stick with it for longer.
- If you are moving too fast, breathe. It will remind you to slow down, and enjoy life more.
So breathe. DO IT NOW! And enjoy each moment of this life. They’re too fleeting and few to waste.