Mindful Breathing Meditation
Number of breaths we take
You’re doing it right now- breathing, that is.
In fact, by the time you finish this article, you’ll have already taken about 10-15 breaths (if you’re an “average” breather). So when you start to think about how much you breathe during a lunch break, a workday, or a 24-hour period, the numbers add up quickly.
Deep, relaxed breathing is an extremely effective approach to mental health and general well-being, and it is exceedingly simple to learn. Unfortunately, many of us spend too much time gasping our air while rushing from one activity to the next to really think about the benefits of controlled breathing.
So here’s a start- if you can’t spend the time today practicing slow, steady breathing (about 10-15 minutes of this can really relax the brain), at least keep these numbers in mind (refer to the graphic). Be mindful of individual breaths, even if you feel rushed or busy with external obligations. Be aware, and think to yourself each time you inhale: “I am breathing…,” or a similar mantra.
Eventually this mindset will help you recognize the need for periods of relaxation and more extended breathing practices. Be kind to your mind- take breaks when you need them and above all, take a deep mindful breath once in a while!