Here is a life-changing story!
One of my yoga students told me this story years ago. She had taken classes from me for a long time. She was aware of the power of the breath and how to effectively use the breath in life situations. What she told me illustrates just how valuable it is to know how to breathe properly.
She received a telephone call and was told that her husband was in the hospital. He was in serious condition, perhaps having suffered a stroke. She rushed to the hospital emergency center. As she entered the building, where there were two sets of doors, she walked through the first automatic door and was about to go through the next door. She stopped herself. She knew she was panicking. She remembered our lessons about the fight/flight response and how you can control this through your breathing. She knew that, if she didn’t do something right away, she would next be seeing her husband. He would know that she was frightened. Her mind would not be able to function in a methodical, calm way in order to make the right decisions for him.
Here’s what she did: She consciously checked her breathing. It was high in her chest (fight/flight breathing). She made it deeper and moved it into her belly. Then she slowed and smoothed out the breath. In moments, she brought her breath and herself under control. By the time she entered through the second set of doors, she was calm enough to handle whatever she would encounter.
Now that’s a skill worth knowing. See how powerful the breath can be!
How are you breathing right now?
With love and namaste, Deanne
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