#BE15for15 – Day 10 – Breathing into the side body
Today let’s take our awareness to the sides of the body. Noticing the movement of the breath along the sides of the body can feel daunting at first because the movement is so subtle. Using feedback from your own hands or the hands of a partner (like we played with yesterday on the back body) can help you to feel your breath, especially when you are first starting out.
If you are working independently, place your hands so that they wrap around the sides of your ribcage with your thumb pointing backward. Try to place your hands up as high as you comfortably can on your ribs.
If you are working with a partner, have your partner place their hands in that same space under your arms. With each breath in, feel your ribcage expanding out wide to the sides, filling your partner’s hands with the breath. With each breath out, feel the ribs release as your partner’s hands gently draw back toward one another.
Focus on filling the hands with your breath for three more breaths.
You or your partner can let your arms relax down at your sides now or shake them out if that feels good to you after holding them up for a while. If you are working with a partner today, you can reverse roles and share your experience.
Do you feel your breath moving on the sides of your body? Did it help you to use feedback from your hands or the hands of a partner? Write down any observations that feel important to you about this awareness based experience with your breath in your journal now.
When you feel ready to begin your practice, set your timer – or press play to begin your guided Daily Breathe Easy practice (included with the Breathe Easy audio book). Allow yourself to continue to observe your breath for 15 minutes. Focus on the easy, gentle movement at the sides of your body during your practice today. Notice any thoughts, sensations, or emotions that reveal themselves to you through this experience. Do not fight them or judge them. Simply notice what shows up and allow it to be. Keep connecting with the movement at your side body.
Maintain this connection to your breath and when you feel ready, gently blink your eyes open if you have closed them.
Notice how you feel after connecting with your breath. If you are using a journal during this process (which I highly recommend), record how you feel after your second 15 minute experience. Did you feel subtle movement of the breath in the sides of your body? How does it feel to connect with your sides? Write down any observations that feel important to you about this awareness based experience with your breath in your journal now. Did this experience feel challenging? Did it feel easy? What did you notice? Was your practice today different than yesterday? If so, in what way(s)? Remember to be kind and to give yourself the gift of grace. Tomorrow we will discuss some of the benefits of a mindful breathing practice as well as how to show yourself some love by setting an intention while you practice. If you have any thoughts or questions you would like to share, please feel free to do so in the comments section! I’ll do my best to keep up!