Sunday, August 22, 2021

Breathing Practice 6 Humming

While we’ve continued with our breathing practice throughout our mindfulness instructions, we’re going to add a different experience to our breathing. This is an easy one as it takes little thought to perform.

Take a deep, slow breath in through your nose. As you exhale, lightly press your lips together and hum as you slowly exhale through your nose. That’s it!

Why humming?
We are not engaging in just another breathing exercise; we are promoting self-care therapy. Humming creates a different focus and is a way to self-soothe, and quiet the mind and body.

Is there a particular humming method to use?
I mentioned the above example to introduce a new breathing experience into your daily practice. You may want to experiment with humming a different musical note until you find one that fits the mood of the moment, but other than that let’s keep it simple.

Personally, I love humming and use it beyond my breathing practice. I hum to calm my breathing pattern, heart rate, thoughts, and emotions. And sometimes I find myself humming while doing other things. When this happens, I know I’m bringing a sense of peace to the moment whatever it is.

Here are some examples of how I tap into humming:
  • Instead of driving like a maniac to an appointment when I’m running late for one reason or another, I hum and calm myself the entire drive. It guides me to back off the accelerator and accept what is.
  • I hum when driving in traffic or bad weather as it relaxes me and again helps me accept what is.
  • I tune into peaceful humming to self soothe if I find myself anxious, tense, upset, angry, frightened...
  • I hum a tune here and there and sometimes hum no tune at all just non-sensical sounds that seem to delight me.
  • And I find myself humming without realizing I’m doing it when I’m focused on something I enjoy like cooking or gardening, and even while doing things I don’t particularly care to do like house cleaning.
  • Humming has helped me focus during devastating times of my life.
  • A hum here and a hum there has guided me to understanding my feelings and helped me find answers in the space between the notes.

What I’ve come to understand about humming is that it is a powerful tool in my mindfulness practice. You should know that you don’t have to be able to carry a tune to experience the wonders of humming. And you can hum in your head anytime and anyplace without making a sound. Just begin with your daily breathing practice and before you know it, you’ll find a hum here and a hum there when you least expect it. Shall we give it a go?  Hummmmmmmm

Take care,

Friday, August 6, 2021

Self Care

Living your life in a mindful manner is taking care of YOU! And that’s what self-care is all about. If we are trying to take care of everything and everyone else, there’s usually nothing left at the end of the day for our self. And, quite frankly, this is a recipe for disaster in terms of emotional, mental, physical, and spiritual health.
We cannot be for others if we are not be-ing for our self.

Over this past year we’ve spent months on breathing and focus exercises, considered our five senses, immersed our senses in nature, created space, and asked why, why, and why again all for the benefit of bringing mindfulness or true awareness into our lives. Every exercise we have done this year is self-care. If that’s surprising to you then you need to begin to see the self-care picture beyond diet and exercise - with a little quiet time worked in, because it is so much more. Perhaps it would help you to consider self-care as enhanced well-being and bring mindfulness to more things in your life: as you eat, drive to work, grocery shop, meet with a friend, stand in line at the grocery store, brush your teeth, and on and on...

We just need to keep the momentum going and continue our mindful ways. This is not just a one-shot deal, it’s a present moment awareness mindset, a full-on lifestyle choice. It reminds me of the value I have in my emotional, mental, physical, and spiritual health. My overall intention in my life is to be the best I can be. Focusing on a more mindful lifestyle guides me to achieving my best life.

And guess what? It’s never too late to start, re-start, or kick-start your intention to be mindful. If you haven’t been faithfully following along, just go back to the start of the posts for the year and begin again. See, that’s the thing about the choice of being mindful, it’s okay to begin again.

Take care,

What’s next for our year of mindfulness? We’ll be building on our breathing and venture into meditation. Sounds like fun to me!

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