“My mind’s a mile a minute
My thoughts they bark like hounds
I focus on my breathing
And the Universal Sound”~ Tyler Childers
The repetitive thoughts. That’s the worst part, for me.
No, the worst part is the inability to complete a thought. Forget completing an action. Ok. The worst part is being imprisoned in the swirling negative thoughts. The relentless waves of partial statements. Not an internal dialogue as much as a rising tide of ungrounded emotions with no origin and no resolution. The forgetting to breathe. How the hell does an adult forget to breathe?
Breath regulates the nervous system. Did you know that? Simply slowing the breath, inhaling and exhaling deeply and mindfully allows the body and mind to realign. What an incredible gift.
Breath work is not a new concept. The popular “4-7-8 method”which I will share here, is based on the ancient practice of pranayama, a yogic breathing practice. The following is a method adapted for use anywhere with no additional knowledge or training. Practice daily to regulate the body’s physiological and energetic systems.
- Find a comfortable place to sit with your back straight.
- Place your tongue against the back of your top teeth and keep it there.
- Exhale completely through your mouth around your tongue, making a whoosh sound. Purse your lips if it helps.
- Close your lips and inhale through your nose for a count of four.
- Hold your breath for a count of seven.
- Exhale completely through your mouth making a whoosh sound for a count of eight.
- This completes one cycle. Repeat for three more cycles.
I hope this helps quiet the hounds. If you would like to learn more about the 4-7-8 breathing method you may enjoy the article referenced here.
What to Know About 4-7-8 Breathing
Medically Reviewed by Dan Brennan, MD on June 09, 2021
Also, this week at The Golden Crone on Facebook we will be exploring pranayama and other yogic practices for release and relief. Hope to see you there.