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Columns : Radiant Health - Angelika Christie Last Updated: Feb 6, 2017 - 2:32:04 PM

Breath of Life (Part four)
By Angelika Christie
Jan 23, 2007 - 9:28:48 AM

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I am so glad I have the pleasure to sit in your company once again; it has been too long, Changes took place, and adjustments followed that needed some time to be worked out. But, I am back to share my knowledge and passion for health, wealth and happiness with you.
Don’t worry if you disagree with me, I encourage you to take everything you hear, or read and put a question mark to it first. I am not talking about cynicisms or disagreement from a stubbornly closed mind here, but a healthy sense of skepticism.

Never believe anything just because you hear it from somebody you think should know what they are talking about, unless it feels right to you. Yes, you read correctly; it has to feel right to you in order to benefit you. But this is a subject for another article. Let us now come back to the last part of our series of four, titled: “Breath of Life”.


The Holiday Season is behind us, the first month of the New Year is almost over and you may feel that most of the good New Year resolutions are already pushed on the side track. Don’t be hard on yourself; you may still be tired from the heavy demands that the month of December usually brings to our body (no, not the rushing around, which could be considered as exercise, but the heavy demand on your digestive system!) This is also   the time when credit card statements are two pages long, and you wonder why you did it again. You spent more than you had planned, burdening you now with anxiety you did not envisioned in all the excitement that the holiday season is so famous for. No wonder that establishing better habits on top of this kind of stress is almost too much to handle.  


Just slow down, breathe!!


And here we are, ready to discover how we can combat stress and anxieties with breath.   So let’s continue practicing the art of right breathing. Our breathing is closely connected to your state of mind, or feeling. When we feel anxious, stressed, or fearful, we have a tendency to hold our breath: our breathing pattern becomes erratic and imbalanced. This puts stress on our nervous system and affects all parts of our bodily systems negatively; it suppresses the natural healing system of our body, including the immune system.


How does that happen?


Your glandular system throws out stress hormones by the buckets, your body moves into an acidic pH range, your adrenal glands get overworked to exhaustion until you find yourself in a vicious cycle.   This needs to be broken! You can gain control with awareness of your breath and the knowledge of applying proper breathing.


Those of you who have ever enjoyed the pleasures of working with horses can relate easily to the metaphor of “pulling in the reigns”, which means collecting a run-away horse. Bringing back order into a spooked herd or flock takes a strong desire for responsibility and authority; it demands calmness. Your heart may still be racing away, your emotions welling high, but taking control of your breath by consciously slowing it down will bring order and harmony back into your body. Your body follows your breath, your nervous system obeys your breath; it is that powerful!


When you have practiced the right way of breathing you have the greatest weapon to achieve almost everything you desire. I say ‘almost’, because there is another important part of the “creative principle of manifestation” to work in everything. We will learn about that at a later time. We have to learn how to “walk” before we can practice “running”; we know this from our own childhood experiences.

For now just remember to become aware of your tension and erratic breathing in stressful situations, then consciously relax your body and slow down your breathing. Stress, anxiety and fear create tension, tightness, and restriction in your blood vessels.


Just imagine your breath gently untying the knots in your stomach, softening the tissue around your heart, and creating space between your cells until you feel a delicious warming and expanding sensation. Now everything is slowing down, even physical pain fades away in this surrender. No pill, no side effects; well a good side effect is calmness and clarity of mind. Your stressful situation has a much greater chance now to be positively resolved.


It always amazes me when I observe the breathing patterns of my clients, and how common wrong breathing is. It becomes especially acute in physical exercises where the most normal way of breathing is to exhale when engaging the abdominals. I tried to explain how the belly expands on the in-breath, because the air needs space. So naturally when the air leaves the body the abdominals (belly) pulls in. Sometimes even this does not help to break the pattern of unnatural breathing, which was practiced unconsciously for too long.   I got an idea. I thought about this just today when I decided to close this article with the best advise I could ever give you; we all have heard it before, yet only few adults use it.

What is it? It is Laughter of course! The old, and may I say wise saying is: “ Laughter is the best medicine” It truly is. Why? Laughter brings energy and joy into the body, which produces endorphins, the “happiness hormones”. If you laugh often enough, ( children laugh on average 40 times a day) every aspect of your life will improve, and as a nice side effect you tone and strengthen your internal muscles.  


But most of all, it encourages the right way of breathing; your belly contracts on your exhalation (the audible laughter) and naturally expands on your short air intake. Hurrah!! So here we have it: the most wonderful way of practicing the right way of breathing.


Until next time,

Your Partner in Health,

Angelika Christie ND


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