brain breaks // 3 sighs

I am so excited to be guiding you through the next series called ‘Brain breaks.’

These are short exercise focused around learning simple strategies to help you move through life more mindfully. 

This is less about a formal sitting practise and more about developing strategies that can be used in everyday settings. 

These exercises can be done on the move and don’t necessarily require you to stop and close down the eyes. It may help to think of them as a little pause throughout your day that simply reminds you to check in.

Brain Breaks are a very simple way to incorporate mindfulness into your daily doings.

They can be practised anywhere at any time, in turn, allowing you to relax in the midst of the activity, busyness and stress of daily life.

The following super simple sighing exercise brings you back into the present moment by engaging with your breath and body.

So with that in mind, lets begin with a Sigh mini-meditation. 

The fastest way to unlock your breathing is to SIGH.

Think of a sigh as having three parts - IN BREATH. OUT BREATH and PAUSE AT THE END.

A yawn is a turbo charged sigh - A good yawn makes it very tricky to maintain high intensity breathing as it forces your breath to slow down by actively stretching the face, throat and neck. 

Whatever you were thinking before the yawn has probably dropped off.

For this reason giving full attention to three sighs is a great way to find your flow and ground you in the present moment in the face of annoyance and anger. 

This exercise is easy to implement and is very short, hence why it is referred to as a Brain Break or, spot meditation.

The idea is that, You will simply Sigh three times.

The first big in-breath focuses on the inhale and unlocks the tight chest and opens the shoulders,  you then let go of the breath making the exhale audible.

The important bit is waiting in the space at the end until you really need to breath again.

On the second Sigh, it is useful to have a yawn - even if its a fake yawn, chances are it will trigger a real one. As I mentioned earlier, a yawn further slows down the breath significantly.

The third sigh focuses on the releasing the out breath completely and waiting at the end until the next breath arrives at its own accord.

Feel free to do this exercise whenever you see fit. It might be in a meeting, whilst in traffic, when you’re waiting in a line at the post office or grocery store. 

Three sighs. Simple.