Breathing to support our mental health.
The new century has come of age – 21. It used to be tradition to be given a key on a 21st birthday. The key was to open the door to the rest of your life. But here we are in 2021 wondering what has hit us, and the last thing we may be thinking about is a new door opening.
So many people are struggling with mental health issues. Many are isolated and lonely. 2021 has dragged in the detritus of the previous year and now we must manage the fall out.
‘Here we go again’ is ringing out across the world. And now we must find a way through it again.
When life appears to be out of control it is often useful to think about what you can control rather than what has been taken away.
That is easier said than done I know.
Sometimes it is about embracing the swings and roundabouts.
We will have days when we feel low as well as those when we feel fine. Sometimes we will wonder what all the fuss is about and other days we may feel as if it is all too much.
I think that we must cut ourselves some slack.
If we can do that for ourselves, we will be able to do the same for others.
Since April 2020 I have often thought about breathing.
It has been my greatest discovery along with yoga.
Honestly, I think, we need to use our breath which is free and available if we are well, and harness its life-giving energy.
Not just mindlessly let our breathing be the act of respiration, the exchange of gases. But conscious breathing, the focused breathing that enables us to relax and restore. Recharge and reinvigorate.
Each morning for the last six weeks I have laid on my yoga mat and set an intention for the day. I look up at my office ceiling, the view does not change but my mindset does. It varies in its energy and focus.
As I lie there, I give thanks for the many people in my life, and I breathe on purpose. I focus on what is happening in my body and mind and start my day.
My yoga teacher says to observe what is happening without judgement and that is what I do now. It takes away the pressure to be anything apart from who I am in that very moment.
So, at the beginning of 2021, why not set an intention to accept yourself in the moment and take a deep breath.
If you are interested in finding out more:
I am running Breathing space groups. If you would like to attend one, please get in touch:
A space to think, speak and be.