My favorite calming tool is actually something you do every moment of every day: Breathe.
Our breath is our superpower. That's because breathing correctly slows down your nervous system and helps return you to the present moment. And when we focus on the present, anxiety simply can't exist.
But there are so many different breathwork techniques out there, you might wonder where to begin. Well, to feel more calm and centred, you want to focus on a breathing technique that works into your parasympathetic nervous system (the so-called rest & digest mode).
Here is a list of my favourite breathing techniques to feel calm:
Close off your right nostril and inhale through your left nostril for 4 counts
Close off both nostrils and hold your breath for 7 counts
Release the right nostril and exhale through the right nostril for 8 counts
Take one full diaphragmatic breath and then repeat by closing off your left nostril and inhaling through your right for 4 counts
My practice looks different every day. It really is a journey. Sometimes you have ups and sometimes downs.
Sometimes I sit somewhere quiet and sometimes I lay in my bed. Other times I’m prepping food or have my hands deep in the soil.
Not one day is the same, just like our lives. Sometimes I show up and don’t like what I find within. And other times, it’s hard to be an objective observer and label every single thought.
But what is consistent is the showing up part. Of making a conscious decision to show up, to make the time, to look within no matter what I find inside.
Meditation has taught me that I can always press the reset button. That it gives my thinking mind a break. That I can always return to my center and feel grounded.
Here is a list of my favourite meditation practices:
Cooking (yes, preparing food is a meditation when it’s done in a mindful way)
Movement of any form really is medicine. Getting out of the mind and feeling into the body. And guess what? You can do this anywhere. Whether it is stretching at your desk or going for a walk on your lunch break.
My favorite form of movement is allowing my body to move intuitively.
Do you remember the last time you turned up the music at home and danced around without a care in the world, not worrying about what anyone would say? Yes, that’s the kind of movement that really gets you into the present moment and out of your head.
Here is a list of my favourite movement styles:
Vinyasa Yoga (linking breath to movement)
5. TAKE BREAKS
Taking breaks and planning them throughout your day supports your overall sense of well-being.
Create space for little breaks in between meetings
Take moments to consciously focus on your breath for one minute
Make yourself a Matcha Latte and take the extra time to froth your milk (so worth it, I promise).
About Nina: With a degree in social work and psychology, Nina has been interested in the studies of the human mind and behaviour from an early age. She is a certified yoga, meditation & breathwork teacher, has trained in Hatha/Vinyasa and holds additional certifications in Restorative, as well as in Yin Yoga. "Mindfulness is every being's birthright" is Nina's 'above-all' approach in interaction with others. Follow Nina’s mindfulness journey here.
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* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
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