Mindful breathing is just one way of learning and practicing mindfulness. It helps you be more mindful by allowing you to better focus your mind on a single thing, such as the path of your breath as you inhale and exhale.
It can help with disconnecting from distractions and focusing your mind better, which can be a great source of relief from stress and anxiety.
It's also a very easy technique to perform, it may take some getting used to in the beginning, but once you get it, it really is one of the simplest and best way to refocus yourself in any situation.
Breath meditation may refer to the practice of following your breath during meditation.
Many types of meditations focus on following your breath as a way of focusing your mind, and eventually quieting it.
In guided meditations, the guide will instruct you to follow your breath in different ways. They can instruct you to follow the breath as it enters your nose and goes to your lungs, to pay attention to the sensation of your chest or your stomach rising. To pay attention to the temperature of the breath as it enters and exists your nose.
Following and focusing on your breath during meditation, and during other mindfulness activities, is a great way to focus your mind and to allow it to relax.
Almost any activity can be a mindfulness activity, it just depends on how you perform the activity.
You can exercise and be mindful by focusing on the muscles that are being activated as you lift the weight and lower it. Really focusing on the feeling of the muscle, on how it contracts, paying attention to how heavy the weight feels, and to any other sensations you experience while exercising.
You can be mindful while walking also. Focus on your steps, on how it feels when your heel touches the ground. Try to focus on how you are stepping, what you are stepping on, the speed at which you are walking, the way your whole body moves with each step.
Really, almost any activity can be done mindfully. Even typing on a keyboard can be done mindfully by focusing and directing your attention to how it feels when your fingers hit the keys as you type.
It's not easy, but with the right practice and exercises, it can be done.
One exercise that I have been using that has been showing good results is mindful breathing.
Mindful breathing is just that, you are breathing mindfully. While you breathe, just follow the breath in and out, focusing on the sensation of breathing.
You can shift the focus to different areas, such as the air coming in and going out of your nostrils, focusing on the temperature of the air, if it's colder coming in and hotter going out.
You can focus on the smells, on the length of each breath, the noise your breathing makes, and on where the breath goes, how it inflates your chest and abdomen, and how breathing out deflates it.
You don't have to do this all day, but it's just as easy as remembering that you are breathing, and to start focusing on an aspect of that process. Eventually, this will become a sort of second nature, and you will find yourself doing it without telling yourself to, it will just happen.
Apply this same technique to other activities in your daily life, and you will start to notice that you are actually more mindful in your everyday life.
Definitely. Quite a few times, actually.
When I was a kid, my father died, this sent me into a state of constantly thinking "what's the point?".
I don't know if this is common or not, especially for kids, but anytime I wanted to do something, my immediate thought was "What's the point?".
My way of coping with it was to not try and block those thoughts, because when I did that, it got worse, but also not to ignore them because, again, when I did that, it got worse. What helped me push through that phase and eventually get out of it was to basically accept those thoughts. Once those thoughts came up, I didn't pay them any attention, I noticed them and just let them be, and continued with what ever I was doing, or planning on doing.
This phase eventually passed. It was not easy, especially in the beginning, but as time went by, it became easier and easier, until those thoughts just stopped, without me even noticing that they had stopped.
Thinking back on it now, I realize that that is sort of a core principle in meditation, I believe. In meditation, you are instructed to not try and block your thoughts, to not get angry or frustrated with them, and to definitely not fight them, because that will only make things more difficult, it will be more difficult to get those thoughts out of your mind and to stop them from coming. Instead, we are instructed to let the thoughts be. Let them come, notice them, and then just let them go. It's the more we linger on to those thoughts that cause those thoughts to linger on to us. If we just notice them, don't give them our energy, and let them pass, they will do just that, they will pass.
Other than that phase in my life, I have had quite a few different issues. I don't know if they could be considered mental health issues, or just sort of "who I am" issues. They may have just been part of my personality. Either way, they were struggles, and they still are.
I am much more mindful than I was in the past, I am much more aware and accepting of myself, and of others. Still, though, I know I have some unresolved issues that I am working on. And I believe it's just a work in progress that takes time, and acceptance. Like life itself, I believe it's a work in progress and as we go through it, it improves, as long as we allow it to.
If I cannot trust who ever is in the relationship with me, I will always have a negative feeling that I may one day be badly surprised by something this person has done.
This is true for me for all types of relationships.
If I cannot trust the person in the relationship with me, I will just not be able to feel comfortable with them. I wont be able to comfortably share things with them, talking to them, and being with them.
I think I am always asking more questions. In general I am not someone who just accepts whatever he is told. I usually "wonder" about things.
I wonder if things are true, how things work, who did what, why, and all the questions.
I am a curious person, so naturally I don't just settle for the things I know, I almost always will try to find out more about what ever it is.
I am not always able to motivate myself into doing them.
There are times when I do feel motivated, but these of course are usually times when I am not in a situation to do them.
At other times, I just find it difficult to get myself motivated enough to start.
But, when I do manage to be motivated and start the work, I try and usually do get as much done as I possibly can, just to take advantage of the current motivation I feel.
Do your best, you may not always succeed, but at least you did the best you could do, and if you do, then you did succeed.
I do sometimes, maybe not because I think I am always right or others are wrong, I think its just a quick reaction, an instinct type of thing.
When someone says that I am wrong or disagrees with me, I sometimes have an instinct to push back, but I try to minimize that as much as I can, as I prefer to be corrected rather than speak nonsense.
Depends when, but I will always appreciate other peoples advice on certain subjects, especially when it comes to true life experience.
I don't always have the right answer, even when I think I do, hearing someone else's perspective helps me to sometimes understand that.
I just try to do the best I can, and I try and acknowledge when I have made mistakes and when I am wrong.
In my mind I do, but not really as much as would actually benefit me.
It also depends on when and what.
Someone else here mentioned that its easy to say all the right things, but doing them is another story.
I cannot agree with this more.
Sometimes we know what to do, but just can't.
We are so focused on the bigger things, on the bigger picture, that we forget to enjoy the small moments in life that help shape our days.
To become self employed. I have been working towards this for a while, and I am finally in a place where things are progressing, slowly, but still progressing.
Depends on the debate!
We should live in reality and in the present moment, but, sometimes escaping into imagination is just too tempting, the possibilities are truly endless there.
I think that our imagination can be used as an escape from reality at times.
It can also motivate us through the stories we come up with.
One is for them to be able to actually understand me, and I them.
I have been in relationships in the past where I constantly heard "I don't understand you..".
This was said to me because of my thoughts, my actions, decisions, and generally the words I chose to say and the way I chose to say them.
Talking with other people though was much easier, they understood me, and even if they didn't agree with me, they were still able to understand my point and where I was coming from.
Another value is the ability to understand when mistakes were made and to admit when we are wrong.
Rather than just arguing and being stubborn about mistakes that were made, I appreciate the ability that people have to admit when they are wrong.
I know this isn't always easy, its not easy for me either, but even working trying to improve that is important to me.
Which brings me to the next value - improvement.
I absolutely love it when people try to improve themselves. Not because I necessarily think they need to change or improve themselves, but because it shows a certain humility about a person who is willing and able to accept that some things may need to be improved about themselves.
Its when people don't try to change things or improve things that, at least I believe, life gets a little bit stale.
I try to be calm and patient with people. You never know where the other person is coming from and what hardships they have in life, so I always try to keep this in mind when speaking with others or confronting others. Especially in situations where the conversation can lead to arguments and to more negative directions.
I believe that being more understanding, and trying to listen to others rather than to just respond and react can lead to a better world if everyone were more mindful of this. People would understand each other better.