Oxygen is our first biological need (followed by water, food, shelter, community). In the stressful lives that we live, our typical response to stress is to become physically tense and to constrict our breath, when it is actually the full breath that we need to soften the tension. Muscle tension and breath constriction are a from of bracing to withstand the onslaught that we perceive is coming our way. Breathwork has an incredibly wide variety of benefits and is used, in some format, by most major spiritual traditions.
- Breathwork can be a critical component in helping us to pause when we are emotionally reactive, thereby giving us the capacity to respond rather than react.
- Breathwork can quickly create calmness through activation of the vagus nerve.
- Specific types of breathwork, like pranayama or holotropic breathwork, can take us into altered states of consciousness that can help us connect to the Greater Something.
- Specific types of breathwork-based interventions, like rebirthing, can help to heal early wounding.
- Helps to eliminate respiratory toxins (anesthesia, airborne chemicals).
- Increases awareness of bodymind connection.
- Can be helpful in decreasing stress, depression and anxiety.
Because breathwork is so central to cultivating calm awareness and connecting to our Deeper Self and the Greater Something, it is a component in the work I do with everyone.