As most of us know, breathwork is a core part of any yoga practice. Flowing through movements of your body and letting your breath find the natural rhythm to match is an easeful practice that brings us stress relief, balance and peace. It is easy to find a place of solace on the mat, especially when we’re in a room with others. Our breathwork is a natural extension of our yoga practice.
But how do we keep breathwork going in our day-to-day? It can be challenging to make time for breathwork when we our out living our lives with a busy schedule and a full to-do list. We start to take the act of breathing for granted even, and if we experience stress or tension, our breath can become shallow and tight. This is why making breathwork a regular practice is a key part of feeling ease and peace in your life. It helps relieve stress, worry and anxiety, and brings us back home to our self.
A wonderful breathwork tool that you can use anytime is called 4-7-8 Breathing. It’s a skill that has been proven to have the same effect as many anti-anxiety medications and when used regularly, it will help your body slow down, help you ease tension and help you stay grounded and centered.
Here’s the steps for 4-7-8 breathing. Follow these steps slowly and find the right rhythm that works for you:
- Inhale to a count of 4 (ex: 1-2-3-4)
- Hold your breathe to a count of 7
- Exhale to a count of 8
- Repeat as many times as needed
4-7-8 Breathing is a wonderful practice to incorporate into your morning and evening routines. Breathwork like this helps you set a calm tone for your day and also can help you wind down at night. It’s also an excellent tool to practice whenever you’re feeling stressed or overwhelmed. Even by pausing for 3 minutes and practicing this technique, you can start to rewire your breathe and your brain to seek calm and peace, even in stressful situations.
The true magic of 4-7-8 breathing is that is slows you down and encourages those deep, belly breaths that are like pure gold for your mind, body and spirit. Deep breathing and breathwork are ultimately the key to our health. When we breath well, we feel better. When we know how to work with our breath, we can keep all parts of our self calm and centered.
The best part is that this type of breathwork requires no equipment, can be done anywhere, takes almost no time, and is extremely simple. 4-7-8 breathing is a perfect stepping stone to start your breathwork practice.