Breathwork serves as a great mindfulness practice because it reminds us about what we can control. This can be such a welcome experience when we are going through difficult times. Sometimes we need the reminder that there are aspects within us that we do have a say in. Aspects such as how we are breathing, where we are sitting, and what activity we are taking part in.
There are a variety of breathing exercises, but the one I am sharing here is one that really seems to resonate with others. This exercise combines breathing techniques with visualizations. So below, I put together a sample of a mindfulness script that I use both personally and with clients.
Sample Breathing Mindfulness Exercise
When in a seated position, I want you to have your feet planted firmly on the ground and your hands resting comfortably on your lap. As you get comfortable in this seated position, you make small adjustments in your body to make sure you feel comfortable and well supported. Once you find that comfortable position, you gently close your eyes and start practicing deep belly breathing.
As you inhale, you breathe in through your nose, and on the exhale, you open your mouth into a relaxed position and let the air go freely. When on the inhale, you visualize your belly expanding out like a balloon, and on the exhale, that balloon becomes smaller. As you continue to breathe in and out, you find a comfortable pace for each inhale in and exhale out. With each breath, you start to feel your muscles relax because more and more oxygen is getting into you muscles. You feel your body settle in more deeply and you continue to relax.
When you feel ready, you add in a thought on the inhale that you are breathing in calm, healing energy. On the exhale, you visualize that you are breathing out your worries and concerns. The more and more you breathe in and out, you continue to feel those worries leave your body. You begin to notice how you feel within, and observe it with curiosity. Your mind and body are also taking in all the healing and calming energy with every inhale, leaving you with the sensation of inner calm and peace.
You continue this breathing for a few more minutes in silence, and when you feel ready, begin to wiggle your toes and fingers. Slowly open your eyes and look around the room, taking in what you see, hear, feel, smell and taste. You are getting your mind and body back to where you are now. You may feel like getting up and walking around to take note of what you see and hear. Stretching and moving your body help you to orient yourself to where you are now. Once you feel connected and present with the here and now, you notice how you feel physically. You may feel more relaxed while also feeling energized and refreshed to continue on with your day.
While what is happening in the world may bring up feelings of instability and concern, there will always be aspects of life that remind us that we do know how to manage these worries so that they do not get the best of us. In the end, we get to have a say in many aspects of life. How we set that up each day and implement it can make a big impact in how we feel each and every day. We have the ability to reign in the distress by using mindfulness practices so that we can live our life on our own terms. Small changes can lead to bigger shifts for the better to keep you grounded when upsetting world events takes place.