Using Your Breath as an Effective Mindfulness Exercise

by Annika Paynter on January 20, 2011

How does one become more mindful? How exactly does the way you think have an effect on your reaction and response to situations? How does the way you think affect your emotional response to situations?

There are lots of mindfulness exercises, but just about the most effective technique is ‘awareness.’ When you’re aware of your surroundings, aware of your body, the way you feel, there’s very little room or space inside you and in your mind for anything else except being aware and in the moment. Distractions fall away. A feeling of peace and calm fill you, replacing any stress or tension you might have experienced.

So what can you do to become more aware, present, and in the moment? Well, an excellent starting point is to focus on your breath.

Just this simple act alone…of breathing…inhaling, exhaling… seems to dissipate any negativity you might be feeling. Among the list of easiest strategies to gain back your balance to get relaxed and mindful is to take a slow, deep breath. Everything starts with the breath. Open your throat. Relax your body. Your breath is your life energy that links to inner wisdom and your higher power.

The next time you’re feeling stressed, tense, or anxious, observe your breath. Anytime you feel the need or desire to return to center, breathe. Visualize the cool, clean air infusing your throat and lungs with beautiful light. This straightforward awareness will help you to get focused almost instantly. This simple act is an extremely powerful mindfulness exercise…a wonderful meditation.

In fact, make it a daily habit to include into your life. All it takes is a couple minutes, tops. Through breathing and meditation, you consciously reprogram your thoughts and mind. Meditation is just about the easiest and most readily accessible techniques for becoming aware, present, and tapping into your higher self.

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