Breathe. Take a break, sit back and just listen to yourself breathe. When is the last time you took time to just take a minute for yourself. Feel your chest expand as you breathe deeper and deeper, become conscious of your diaphragm lifting and your lungs filling up, then breathe out, feel the warm air pass over your lips and your chest deflate. And again, and again, and again.
I know I’m always writing about Shifting Up! or getting off the couch or whatever else I feel like preaching about that day, but today it is about you. About stopping and looking at yourself, the real you, with a set of fresh eyes, about realizing what is important and what isn’t. We are living at an incredible pace these days, we probably communicate more in a day, than we did in a week ten years ago. We are either texting or emailing or grocery shopping or speed dating or dropping our kids off or whatever else you have convinced yourself is necessary for your survival. And we tend to lose ourselves in the process.
The other day I was at my daughters swim class and as I waited for her to finish her lesson, I answered emails and texts and got myself all set up for the next day of work, multi-tasking like a one armed short order cook at the Heart Attack Grill. Well I then exhaled rather loudly and didn’t notice until a woman beside me did a double take, one of those “What the fuck was that?” type looks. I looked at her with an awkward “Don’t think I’m a freak” type smiles and said “Sorry”, and thought to myself how long was I holding my breath for? Five seconds, thirty seconds, a minute? Then I thought, who cares how long? Why was I holding my breath in the first place? I was now über conscious of my breathing. Try to think of how you breathe and you start to breath different, it’s the weirdest thing. Well sitting there I needed to get up and go outside, not that I was embarrassed or anything, I just needed to figure out what was going on in my head. The sun was warm but the air was cold outside and still being aware of my breathing it felt nice, refreshing. Breathing in and out, feeling my body warm up the cold air as I invited it into my lungs, I became more aware of me, not where I needed to be, not what I needed to do, but just being present within my own body. It felt great. It was like I had all the time in the world, and I realized I always had that option, that I was important enough to take a minute for, nothing was worth holding my breath over.
I now take time to breathe, if I feel myself getting caught up in life, I take a moment for myself, figure out what is right for me and move ahead confidently. This is the yin to my crazy life’s yang. Breathe, it is the most natural thing you can do, and you only get so many of them in our short lifetimes, so why hold your breath?