Whoever you are, whatever you do, wherever you live – your life probably gets a little crazy sometimes. I'm sure of this, because the world is a crazy place. I don't know about you, but sometimes I feel like my life is spinning out of control around me, and I'm holding on to my sanity with nothing but my pinky finger.
Lucky for us, we all have an easily accessible tool that can help us find peace and calm in the midst of the hurricane that is life – our breath.
No matter what is happening to you or around you in life – whether you're stressed out, depressed, gloomy, ecstatic, elated, overwhelmed, heartbroken, worried, scared, or on the verge of losing that very last grip on your sanity – you can always come back to your breath. One of my most cherished yoga teachers once referred to the breath as the eye of the storm, and this metaphor has really stuck with me. If you find yourself lost in one of life's storms, locate your breath and find the eye of that storm. By connecting to your breath, you can seek refuge within the eye – the center of calm – while everything else may be whirling out of control around you.
To do this, here's a little three-part breathing exercise I like to use (although there are a number of breathing practices you can use, and perhaps you already have a favorite!). This one is pretty easy and, better yet, totally discreet, so you can try it out anywhere and pretty much under any situation.
Begin by breathing through your nose. Slow down and deepen your inhales and exhales. Now, break each inhale and exhale down into three parts.
On your inhale: