February 08, 2021, Publisher: Breath Hub
The number of people practicing breathwork increases every day. Many turn to breathwork to relax, calm down, get better sleep, improve their athletic performance, cope with anxiety disorders, or simply feel better. You may be just getting started with breathwork and breathing techniques, or you may be practicing for some time. Either way, you could be having trouble concentrating during breathing exercises. Let's look at how you can improve your focus.
In both Eastern and Western practices, breathing is perceived as a means of physical and mental well-being, raising awareness, spiritual enlightenment, and bonding with the whole. When we use our breath correctly, it has psychological effects such as a balanced mood, an open mind, an intense concentration, and physiological benefits such as strengthening the immune system and boosting energy.
The first step of breathwork is to become aware of breathing that occurs spontaneously. We intentionally focus our attention on our breath, observe the breath and allow it to flow naturally. When a breathing exercise is done properly, a spontaneous concentration accompanies the process. We focus on the spontaneity of breathing, the experience of it, and we harmonize with it.
Respiration, an ordinary, passive bodily function, transforms into an active means of healing when we direct our focus from our thoughts to our breathing, to the body's natural movement. But we may not always succeed in concentrating the way we want. Many of us have pretty busy minds. Our thoughts interfere, and our focus is interrupted. Especially in the initial phases, it is natural to have difficulty focusing. But, how can we deal with a mind that works nonstop?
Knowing our mind helps us to cooperate with it. The difficulty of focusing is more about the mind's structure than a problem unique to our time. In our everyday life, the mind continually wanders off and pursues myriad thoughts. In Buddhist culture, this condition is called "the monkey mind." When you can't gather your attention, remember that this is a natural phase.
Your mind can continue to be active during a breathwork session. Remember that interruption of your focus is part of the process. Bring your disorganized mind into the work. The point here is not to get stuck on your thoughts but to let them go by. Observe your mind. Gently return to your centre when you lose focus or your mind is preoccupied with thoughts.