When was the last time you actively listened to your own breath?
Your breath is the power source of your existence, it is your essence and yet as with so many parts of ourselves we don't always take the time to become better acquainted with our breath. We'll take a shower and apply perfumed soap, we'll spend time on our personal grooming - shaving, applying cosmetics. But how many of us take the time to listen to our breath as part of our daily routine?
This exercise is about encouraging you to explore your breath either whilst lying on your yoga mat or alternatively in the comfort of your bed! I find this technique of mindful breathing to be one of the greatest aids for helping me to sleep.
Once you have lain down on your yoga mat or climbed into bed, you will need to relax comfortably on your back with your arms resting at your side. Listen to your breathing. As you listen start to feel where the breath is going inside your body. Are you breathing into your belly? Are you breathing into your chest? Gently take your hands and place them on the part of your body where you feel your breath.
After a while, begin to experiment with your breathing and see if you can send your breath to different parts of your body. Place your hands on your body so that you can "show" your body the place where you intend your breath to go. Taking several deep inhalations and exhalations in each area can be very soothing.
I like to breathe into my tummy, my diaphragm, my chest and then into my ribs. I then try to send my breath to both my upper and lower back. With practice, I then try and send my breath out as though to the points of a compass, feeling the air as it expands through my entire torso north, south, east and west.
Discovering your prana (breath or life force) is something very beautiful