Notice, Soften, and Soothe

The breath itself is a representative of Truth. It is difficult to hide from Truth when you are immersed in the breath. If you but allow, breath will lead you to beauty, grace, harmony, coherence of emotional and mental realms, expand your definition of who you are, increase your overall health and teach you about love in the most exquisite sense possible. 

What is your breath doing now?

As you are reading it is probably quiet and feels “normal.” Anything that is happening is just fine, we are not judging or trying to change anything at all, we are simply noticing. Just by placing the attention of the mind on the breath, you will notice it has begun to shift and change. Let this happen, just observe. Feel the cool air entering your nostrils, and the warm air leaving your nostrils. Cool in, warm out. 

Soften your body in such a way as to make more room for your breath. For example, roll your head around and stretch your neck. Do this now. Or reach your arms over head and lengthen all along your spine. Shrug your shoulders, twist in your chair. Any movements that bring a release of muscle tension in any part of the body is useful, even hips, ankles, feet or toes. Now notice again your breath. What changed? Did you free your breathing space up, even a little? Just take note of how you feel, what you were thinking or feeling and any connections you can make with the state of your breath.

Now, last step. Find something soothing and kind to say to yourself, even if you did not create any negative self-statements in our exploration. You might think, “I feel hopeful about my well-being.” “It feels good to breathe more expansively.” Or even, “what a lovely day this is turning out to be.” Anything that feels soothing and pleasant. It can be very general or specifically related to something you’d like to shift in your life.

Notice, Soften and Soothe can be done anywhere and anytime. Your physical movements may be limited by your surroundings, like driving a car, but your inward journey can be vibrant and useful even then. Try this exercise when you are calm and quiet. Do it at other times that you feel annoyed or agitated. Notice how your breathing is different in different emotional states. You may want to jot down a list of soothing statements that you find especially useful for those times when you are too angry or upset to think clearly. Use the breath to find your way into your inner being.

This exercise has two purposes: One, to bring you into more clarity about the connection between your thoughts, emotions and the state of your breath; Two, and perhaps even more important, to help you begin to connect with your own inner wisdom. You have inner dimensions of consciousness, a higher self you might say. You can tap into this higher consciousness for information, solutions and direction at any time. The breath can serve as your doorway into this realm of your being. Listening to the breath and its rhythms can assist you in listening for the voice of your own Inner Master.