I’m not good with change. It’s interesting, I enjoy pushing the limits, I like trying new things and I change my environment (and my hairstyle) as often as I’m able. But notice how often I just referred to myself! I’m a control freak, and while I love the idea of change: I like it on my terms.
It stems from a family rooted in tradition, a grandma who lives 7 minutes away (5 in an emergency) and a deep love… deeper than any love or family that I know.
In retrospect, I am one of the best at change in my family. I face it head on and try to mentally formulate a plan… which usually ends up falling by the wayside after a few days or even hours (it’s the control freak in me, I try…).
Each person processes change differently. For example: my mom and my brother will stick their heels in the mud and refuse to change even as the world around the turns. It will take weeks and even months for them to truly settle into the new. My dad on the other hand will run full throttle into any new transition and forget to look both ways first. Somehow, I was split between these two: full fledged complete panic for 24-48 hours… and then I plan and charge ahead.
Change & life happen quickly and the best way I have found for dealing with any transition is to BREATHE!
In class this week, I spoke about the transition from the outside world to the studio. We always spend the first few moments on our mats releasing the outside world. We begin to let go of thinking and sink into feeling. The beginning of class always involves pranayama, or breath work. The easiest way to take your yoga off the mat and into the world is through our breath!
If you find yourself immersed in stress or going through transition and change, follow these simple steps:
1) Find a place to sit comfortably.
2) Close your eyes.
3) Begin to tune out the world around you. There may be many distractions but remember, peace does not come from a place of quiet… it comes from finding quiet among the chaos.
4) Inhale through the nose and feel the breath begin to fill your body. As you inhale, feel your chest expand and the breath begin to travel into your belly.
5) Take in one last sip of air and then hold your breath for a count of 5.
6) Slowly release the breath through you nose. This keeps the breath contained within the body and begins to build heat, or agni.
7) Continue this for 10-12 breaths or until your body begins to soften, your heart rate begins to slow and your breath comes back to the present moment.
Do you have any tricks to help ease stress or transition? I’d love your thoughts in the comments below!
Get out there–do yoga & make life sparkle!
Thanks for breaking it down in steps. I tried it and this really helped me! Thanks!
You’re so welcome Marcy. It is something so simple, and yet so complex. I’m glad you found it helpful~ Have a wonderful day!!
Jenny, Thanks much for this…I am going through big seasons of change right now and even though they are positive and exciting, it doesn’t mean they are without stress. In fact, sometimes good changes are more stressful because….in some ways I feel like I have to live up to them and keep up with them through growing! Breathing….ah, the breath. Thanks for the reminder and the steps to go through the process.
You’re so welcome Court! The season changes… allergies… other transitions and stress… you’re right– the breath is the first step to finding peace! I hope you have a wonderful afternoon and that the upcoming season treats you well 🙂
I love this! I ran a workshop this week, and I realized to get balance and to relax, first step is to breathe!!
Thank you Yasmine! Wonderful to know you’re on the same path!!! It’s so true–breath is always the first step.
Hi Jenny, change can be challenging but is something we should also embrace. The steps you outline are great for getting us back into the present, for practicing mindfulness and grounding ourselves in radical acceptance. Thanks!
You’re so welcome Sonja! Change can be challenging, but it can also lead us to acceptance, patience and wonderful opportunities is we remember to stay present. So glad these steps resonated with you. 🙂
As a practitioner of a couple types of bodywork I often tell clients that their breath is as or more powerful than the equipment they are using in order to free & move the body. Even when the intention is choosing “create change”, resistance can be balanced with the breath. You have embodied and expressed it beautifully.
Thank you so much Sherry. It’s a truly important aspect of our being and not expressed often enough. So wonderful to know there are others also on this path. Your clients must be lucky to have you!
There is nothing quite like a good breath. That was awesome thank you! The noise of the world takes us so far from the basic essential of life…the breath.
I completely agree. With all that buzzes around us, sometime we forget the most essential. It’s a nice, simple reminder. 🙂 Happy Saturday!