One Minute Breath
One minute breath is a powerful breathing technique that is deeply healing, opening, and calming. In other words, perfect for wherever and however the holiday season finds you. This breath and and I have had a bit of a tumultuous past. Initially, I thought the concept of trying to inhale for 20 seconds, hold one's breath for 20 seconds and then somehow magically exhale slowly enough to last 20 seconds, was damn near impossible.
Initially, I could almost make it on the 20 second inhale, holding it wasn't really a problem, but there was no slow and steady release. It all kind of spilled out in one frustrating snort of a breath. Later, I once heard a gifted teacher describe breath as metaphor - how much can you open yourself to hold energy (or prana, or prosperity, or joy), how able are you to hold it, and then (my personal lesson), how controlled can you be when it's time to let it go.
While I'm not at a perfect "one-minute" breath, I have actually started to fall in love with the practice. It's something that can be done sneakily -- at the holiday dinner table, while you're waiting in line at the post office, or even before you lash out at an annoying relative.
To inspire you to try it, Yogi Bhajan shared this about the breath:
If you want things to be done for you so you don't have to do anything, then you must breathe from one to five or six breaths per minute. If you can practice that, then you can attract the Universe to you. It is no secret. It's a simple thing. The longer and deeper your breath is, the more your psyche attracts everything to you—it's a way to prosperity.
Yes, I like things to be done for me. I like the experience of being magnetic. Who doesn't?
So, without further ado, directions for this magical breath. May you practice it today, may it become a friend whenever you need it.
One Minute Breath
- Find a comfortable seated position, or if the hips are tight, sit in a chair with an elongated spine. Place your index fingers and thumb tips together and relax your hands down on your thighs. Do your best to remain still.
Inhale slowly and steadily, filling your lower abdomen, your stomach area, going up to your lungs and then all the way up the chest up to 20 seconds. .
Lock the breath once you fill your upper chest. Hold up to 20 seconds.
Then exhale, slowly gently and steadily for up to 20 seconds.
At the end of 20 seconds gently reverse to an inhale and begin again.
Start with 3 minutes.
On average, you breathe twenty to twenty-five breaths per minute. In good health you breathe ten times a minute and a mentally balanced person breathes seven to nine breaths per minute. Fewer than that and you are a yogi.
On average, you breathe twenty to twenty-five breaths per minute. In good health you breathe ten times a minute and a mentally balanced person breathes seven to nine breaths per minute. Fewer than that and you are a yogi. - Yogi Bhajan
This and more at 3ho.com