Why do I get very emotional during a breathing session?

You may feel just fine at the beginning of breathwork practice and then find yourself deeply upset, remorseful or enraged. You may even end up crying. Whether you are new to breathwork or have been practising regularly for a long time, you might be feeling uncomfortable or confusing emotions during your practice. This happens to many people, so you do not need to worry.

During our daily life, we tend to suppress negative thoughts. We sidestep talking and thinking about them and try our best to avoid feeling them. However, breathwork increases our awareness of the present moment. We do not try to control our thoughts and emotions during sessions. Being in the moment can cause all your experiences and feelings to surface unexpectedly.

If increased awareness and mindfulness cause your emotions to flow, then breathwork is working. (The opposite is not true, though. Not having emotional outbursts during breathing exercises does not mean that you are doing it wrong.) Suppressed emotions are not “bad” emotions; they are just a part of us like all the other emotions we have. Acknowledging and accepting these emotions without judgement or labelling is the first step to healing.