Three Minutes Is All It Takes

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IMG_4804Breathing is so easy.  We do it all day long without thinking about it.  Look at us go!  We can even do it in our sleep – unless we have sleep apnea and require one of those crazy masks that drives our sleeping partner crazy with its wheezy noise.

The reality is WE SUCK AT BREATHING.  We take shallow breaths that barely keep us alive.  You know who doesn’t suck and takes long, deep, relaxing breaths several times a day?  A smoker.  Well, at least until they develop emphysema…from smoking.  Think about the smokers you know at work.  They go outside often for a break which the rest of never take because we (a) are not addicted to poison and (b) prefer to suffer all day under the crushing weight of our workloads.  Smokers inhale and exhale deeply several times, maybe shoot the breeze with another smoker, and stand in the sunshine to soak up some vitamin D.  You’d probably be called a slacker instead of an addict for standing outside without a cigarette; I mean, who just stands there and breathes deeply?  OK, maybe that guy with the ponytail from accounting, but he also sports a brown leather fringed vest on Casual Fridays.

Yesterday, one of my coworkers turned me on to an app called Breathe.  It’s free and it’s awesome.  He and I and two other coworkers tried the guided three minute mindful breathing mediation and it blew my mind (into relaxing).  In a soothing voice, the app lady starts you off by asking you to relax certain muscles in your body, like your face muscles.  Relax yours right now.  Were they tense?  Don’t lie, I know they were.  My entire body was so tense and I had no idea I was walking around like that all day.  She asks you to breath deep, then breath normally, then it’s over.  Three minutes later we were all feeling good.  And we didn’t have to wash our hands and pop a mint afterwards (although I probably should have gone for a mint because that Baja salsa I had for lunch was still kicking around).

Try breathing y’all.  And report back.