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Three Mindful Breaths
Three Mindful Breaths. This is a simple guided meditation script to quickly allow the body to relax and find calm and peace in the midst of stressors.
Let’s begin by taking a moment to settle your body into a comfortable position.
You can close your eyes or keep them slightly open with a soft focus looking downward a few feet in front of you.
Allow your spine to lift and your shoulders to soften (2 seconds).
Today we will practice three mindful breaths.
Begin by taking a slow gentle inhale, resting your attention on the sensation of the air passing over your nostrils and filling your chest and abdomen.
Notice as the inhale ends and shifts back through a slow gentle exhale (3 seconds).
Notice the sensations in the body as the air passes back out.
Rest for a moment and begin again.
Long, slow inhale directing your attention to the sensation of air as you breathe in and long slow exhale noticing sensations.
Once again resting at the end of the exhale and continuing through one
more breathe, in and (2 seconds)
out. (3 seconds)
*ding* (10 seconds).
Integrated Practice: Before eating your next meal today, complete another ‘Three Mindful Breaths’ practice.
What impact do you notice when you stop and take three mindful breaths?
Have you ever watched a sleeping baby or animal breathe? If you have, you may have noticed that the entire body is rising up and down at a natural, even pace. There are no restrictions, no holding back anywhere in the body. This is the basic mindful breath.
Most of us have forgotten how to do this deep belly breathing. Sometimes our breath is so restricted that we actually trigger the symptoms of anxiety. The good news is that mindful breathing is very easy to re-learn.
1. Sit comfortably with a tall (but not rigid) spine, or lie down.
2. Place one hand on your collar bone and one on your abdomen, just below your belly button.
3. Inhale from the bottom of your torso, causing the hand on your abdomen to rise.
4. Continue inhaling until you feel the hand on your collarbone rise.
5. Exhale. Reverse the process on the exhale, feeling the upper hand, then the lower hand fall.
6. Make sure you exhale fully. This is where the body gets the message that “everything is okay.”
7. Repeat for five to ten rounds.
After this short breathing exercises, you’ll probably notice that you are more relaxed, that your thoughts have settled, and that you can think more clearly. Try repeating the mindful breath several times throughout the day. Where possible, aim for twenty minutes of mindfulness breathing each and every day.
For a deeper look at mindful breathing and the nervous system, check out Dr. Carrie Demers’ excellent article.
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