Breathing is probably the most underestimated healing tool that is freely available to us.
However, it is also the least utilised, except for those who recognise its power – or necessity – like athletes or practitioners of martial arts.
Here´s how to do it:
1. Let Your Belly Out!
When you breathe in, let your belly come out. Many people don´t even realise, that they´re breathing inversely, meaning that the belly is sucked in with the inhale.
We need to let the belly come out when we inhale, in order to make room for the diaphragm, which pulls the lungs downwards. The biggest part of our lungs is the lower part. If the belly is sucked in, there is no room for the diaphragm or the lungs, meaning the lungs are never filled up completely, causing shallow breathing. Slumped seating is often preventing deep breathing as well, so you may want to check how you sit as well.
In the beginning it may take getting used to letting your belly out, as you may feel self-conscious. Never let this or being afraid of what other people might think stop you from increasing your health! Besides, sitting upright and breathing deeply is going to automatically raise your confidence, self-esteem and mood.
2. Hold It!
At the top of your breathe, hold it for a moment.
This is the moment when Chi, our life force, is extracted from the breathe. The more oxygen we take in, the more Chi comes with it. The more Chi we take in, the more can be extracted. The more extracted, the more is made available to the body.
3. Send It!
Now send the extracted Chi throughout your body. If you have an issue with a specific part of your body, send the Chi there. Imagine it as white, cleansing and clearing light or give it a colour that you find appropriate. (In her book The Secret Language Of Your Body, Inna Segal is giving advice on how to work with colours for a specific issue.)
This is also a very centering and calming exercise in itself. It increases the healing effects of acupressure work or visualising for healing.
Qi Gong uses a lot of breathing exercises, where the movement supports the breathe and the breathe is in alignment with the movement, making it a powerful yet very gentle exercise option for people of all ages and conditions.