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The Breath Of Life by Marli Reardon

When weʼre born we take that first breath of life outside of our motherʼs womb. We learn what itʼs like to breath outside of our motherʼs body, on our own. As infants our breathing is generally relaxed, calm and full. However unfortunately over time, we lose touch with this relaxed breathing of the infant. We learn new skills and gain responsibilities that consume our lives more and more as we reach adulthood and beyond. Throughout my life, Iʼve engaged in strenuous activities and it wasnʼt unusual for me to hyperventilate. I got so caught up in what I was doing that after I finished a routine I would have to take a time out in order to catch my breath. Years later I was fortunate to meet an amazing massage therapist who instructed me on breathing. I credit her with the visit improvement in my oxygen level, as well as the beginning of my journey toward using breath to relax and enrich my life. Itʼs important to remember that breathing affects us on so many different levels; physical, emotional & mental, as well as being a part of spiritual or meditative practices. Whether youʼre someone who is a novice at relaxed breathing or you have practiced breath work for years, we can all benefit from new and different ways to practice relaxed breathing. Here is a breathing exercise I learned in a group I co-facilitated. Not only did I enjoy the exercise but incorporating the uplifting phrase was really appealing to me. I hope that you enjoy it!




Four Square Breathing Step One: Breathing with even counts of four. - Breathe in four counts - Hold four counts - Breathe out four counts - Hold four counts.

Step Two: Touching thumb to each finger with each count from index finger to pinky and then from pinky to index finger.


Breathing in for four while touching thumb to index, middle, ring, & then pinky finger.

Hold for four while touching thumb to pinky, ring, middle & then index finger.

Breathing out for four while touching thumb to index, middle, ring, & then pinky finger.

Hold for four while touching thumb to pinky, ring, middle & then index finger.


Step Three: Replace counting with a phrase “Calm (Peace, Serenity, Love- your choice) begins with me” while still touching thumb to your four fingers.

So rather than counting to four, replace each number with word 's you breathe in, hold, breathe out, hold.

Breathe in: Calm (one) thumb to index finger - begins (two) thumb to middle finger - with (three) thumb to ring finger - me (four) thumb to pinky.

Hold: Calm (one) thumb to pinky - begins (two) thumb to ring finger - with (three) thumb to middle finger - me (four) thumb to index finger. Bre'the out: Calm (one) thumb to index finger - begins (two) thumb to middle finger - with (three) thumb to ring finger - me (four) thumb to pinky. Hold: Calm (one) thumb to pinky - begins (two) thumb to ring finger - with (three) thumb to middle finger - me (four) thumb to index finger.



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