When the breath wanders the mind is unsteady, but when the breath is calmed, the mind too will be still.
– Hatha Yoga Pradipika, 500-year-old yogic text
I am a lifelong meditator, but I have not always had a habit of regular breathwork.
Conscious breathing has been something I have mostly used in emergencies to calm myself, to take the edge of the pain, or to soothe myself towards sleep.
These last few months though, since my myxedema crisis last year and subsequent relapses, I have turned to breathwork more and more – to keep me calm, to ease trauma in the body, and to slow my mind until I feel grounded, connected and still.
I do breathwork (simple cyclic breathing) at the start and close of the day. I do breathwork sitting at my desk, or while I am sipping a drink and sitting on the deck. I do it in the car. I do it in the shower. I find myself reaching for this practice like a thirsty person in the desert reaches for a glass of water.
It feels like good medicine.
As I play with it and go deeper with it, it becomes more than good medicine. It’s a path home to myself.
Love, and calming breaths, Nicole xx
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