Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Take 3 Deep Breaths

You've heard people encourage one another, "Take a breath", meaning "stop a moment" or "don't run on so frantically." I say it frequently here as a reminder that we don't need to run headlong into activity. We're allowed to pause. That's what mini-vacations are all about.

Today's suggestion for a mini-vacation is a simple one. When life starts to pile up on you, take three deep breaths.

And I mean, "deep", from the belly, not from the throat, not from the chest. Breathe in through your nose and let your belly (that's right, where your belly button is) relax and expand. You women out there, don't worry about looking fat. You're doing this for your sanity. It doesn't take much time. You can suck in your tummy later. For now, let it expand and fill with air as you breathe in, slowly and steadily.

Then breathe out slowly and completely, through either your mouth or nose. The idea is to blow out all your tension with the air. Allow your shoulders and neck to relax as the breath pours out. Close your eyes if it will help you to expel the tension.

Concentrate on what you're doing, how you feel, how much tension is released, the point at which there's no more air to blow out.

Complete the breath.

Then repeat. Twice.

Now move on with your day. Doesn't that feel better?

Blessings on your caregiving!

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