|Right now, due to the pandemic and its fallout, we’re living through one of the most chaotic times the world has experienced. And with the health of our country still in trauma, so is the long-term mental health impact of our frontline workers. Research by 25 mental health experts in The Lancet Psychiatry Journal reveals that those exposed to heightened levels of stress and trauma (which could be any of us right now) may experience “pervasive” and “profound” negative effects both physically and mentally.
As a longtime yoga practitioner, I’ve learned some solid strategies to increase mental and emotional resilience to stress and alleviate these dangers. And breathing is one of the most powerful and accessible forms of self-care and stress management you can do. You can summon a significant positive impact on your energy, aging, brain and immune strength, sleep, happiness, relationships, intimacy, even sex—when you breathe.
Research into the respiratory process confirms that the quality of your breathing has dramatic physical effects on both your body and mind. Through slow, conscious, rhythmic respiration, you can increase your relaxation response, decrease your metabolic rate and blood-sugar levels; lower your heart rate; reduce muscle tension; increase mental alertness, confidence and emotional stability; and more. Pretty good for just breathing!
Breathing is an art. But you don’t need to be taught how to breathe. Breathing needs not to be taught, but liberated.
Read on to learn how the power of your breath can change how you think and feel—and even transform chaos into calm.