Give Yourself Freedom and a Happy Heart
Every year as the holiday season rolls around we promise ourselves that we won’t over schedule and we won’t over spend. We promise ourselves that we are going to get the detail work done early so we have plenty of time and energy to enjoy the special times with family and friends. We commit to prioritize. But somehow as the holiday season draws near we find ourselves worried that we won’t get everything done and along with the sugar plums fairies dancing in our heads, we have visions of chaos caused by incomplete preparation.
As women we are usually the creative force behind holiday cooking, decorating, party planning and clean up. Because are heads are spinning with overwhelm we often take the easy way and do the quickest and easiest thing possible. I remember once I purchased a $15.00 gift for my grandson on line and then paid $25.00 to have it shipped overnight. If you have ever done anything similar, you need the information in this article.
Instead of juggling long lines, lists and preparation anxiety you can give yourself freedom and a happy heart. This is an exceptional gift that keeps on giving all through the year. It is a package filled with love and compassion just for you and it enriches the quality of your life on the day you first use the gift and every day after.
Breathing, when done consciously, deeply and fully, helps to keep you calm, relaxed, centered and connected to highest wisdom. A few moments of good deep breathing slows you down and allows your muscles to soften and relax. Over time it prevents adrenal exhaustion by keeping you out of the fight or flight response. This self-given gift of conscious breathing simply makes you feel better. You’ll be more energized, your mood lighter and your attitude more positive.
How do you do this kind of breathing? You learn to breathe like a newborn infant. As they breathe their little tummies go up and down so smoothly and regularly. As an adult you take and in breath and on the out breath you consciously allow the breath to drop into our lower abdomen. On the next in breath you breathe in deeply from your belly, causing the lower abdomen and waist to expand. On the out breath you allow our tummy to flatten and our shoulders to drop and soften. Ten minutes of deep conscious breathing will help you relax, and thirty minutes will refresh you, relax you and help you create a calmer more joyous day for yourself. One morning I woke up early still feeling tired from the day before. I decided to do conscious breathing until time to get up. When the alarm sounded thirty or forty minutes later I felt as though I had been reborn. I was refreshed, relaxed and ready to move gently and happily into the day.
It is best to choose some time each day to consciously breath and refresh the oxygen levels in your body. If you simply can’t take some “me” time each day, try these ways to integrate conscious breathing into your daily life.
Breathe deeply and consciously
for five or ten minutes before you get out of bed in the morning.
while your taking your morning shower
while you drive to work.
while you are waiting in line at the supermarket.
while watching TV.
when you go to bed at night to help you achieve a good night’s sleep.
while you take your morning walk. Add a few positive words as you take each footstep. On the in breath mentally say resting. On the out breath mentally say softening. Before long, your walk will be over and you will feel relaxed, positive and ready for your day.
Janet Nestor, MA LPC is a holistic and integrative mental health counselor. She can be reached at the Center of Well-Being in Winston-Salem, NC. Office: 336.794.2343