Important notice: Some of our classes are incorrectly showing ‘Class Full’ for some users due to a technical issue. Our engineers are working on it and we hope to have this resolved shortly.
Until then if you want to double check class availability, you can still log in and book via the triyoga Client Portal here.
If you need help please contact your specific triyoga centre here, and our teams will be happy to help you.

Important notice: Our booking system supplier is currently experiencing technical issues, which is causing account and checkout actions to fail in some cases. Their engineers are urgently working on it. Until then, you should be able to log in and book via 1) the triyoga app or 2) the triyoga Client Portal here. Or if you need help please contact your specific triyoga centre here, and our teams will be happy to help you.

Important notice: Due to a global IT outage upstream, you may experience issues with booking, purchasing, or logging in. Their engineers are working on resolving this as quickly as possible. Thank you for your patience

Important notice: Some users are experiencing login issues due to a technical issue upstream with our booking system provider. Their engineers are working on it. Until then you can still log in and book via 1) the triyoga app or 2) the triyoga Client Portal here.

Important notice: Our booking schedules are temporarily down due to a technical issue. Our engineers are working on it and we hope to have this resolved very shortly.
Until then, if you need help please email our customer care team at [email protected] or contact your specific triyoga centre here, and our teams will be happy to help you.

how to use your breath to become more aware, relaxed + positive

Photo: Nine Koepfer

How do you use your breath to become more aware, relaxed and positive?

Well, the simple and straightforward answer is that you don’t need to.

The whole point of techniques that encourage you to focus on your breathing in various ways is to assist you in a process, where your “doer” gradually, or suddenly, lets go of the steering wheel of your life. At least for a while.

In other words, as long as it is still your doer that wants to achieve something – even if the goal is relaxation or awareness – you are in the goal-oriented mindset that created the business and anxiety in the first place.

This is a dead end. When the mind has a new goal, it will want to get busy and have results (preferably as soon as possible!). It will therefore use anything it can in order to achieve it, including breath, if it deems it to be helpful.

It is the nature of the mind to want to be in control. The last thing it would want to let in is the realisation that there is close to nothing that it could “do” the usual way in order for you to become more aware, positive or relaxed.

In many mindfulness or meditation tradition relaxation or meditation is simply called “silent sitting”. Because, fundamentally, that is what is happening: you sit down, you don’t talk … and that’s it.

Of course, the inner talk will continue. Sometimes initially it actually seems to be becoming worse as we are not distracted by external circumstances, so in a way there is nothing else to pay attention to.

Except, there might be a few things. For example, our breath.

So the part that our mind might play – the tiny bit that our mind might be useful “doing” – during silent sitting is using its capacity to focus our attention to one given object (which, of course, it is very good at).

There are other aspects of why our breath is a good choice – the relationship of the parasympathetic nervous system and deep breathing has been well-studied – but for now it is enough to understand that focusing on breathing is practical.

As opposed to abstract images, mantras or colours, the mind gives us a few subtle anchors we can hold on to as we focus our attention: it makes a little sound around our nose, a tiny sensation there or at our lips, and it moves our chest or tummy up and down.

To make it a bit more attractive to our mind – so it would feel useful – we can also add counting to make this simple practice:

  • we choose a place where we can sit comfortably
  • we focus our attention on our breathing at one place (at our nose/mouth/chest/tummy), with no jumping from one place to the other
  • on every exhalation we count from 1-10
  • if we were lucky enough to get until 10, we start again…
  • … or if we have no idea where we were, we just start again from 1.

That is all.

So we are not using our breath. We just focus on it. That is the part we “do”: sitting silently, focusing our attention, counting 1-10. Becoming more aware, more relaxed, more positive – well, it has got nothing to “do” with us. It will just happen. What a relief!

Dan Joy is a heart-centred life coach and complementary therapist, with almost 20 years’ experience in providing treatments and massages. Dan is offering a range of online treatments and you can make a booking here.

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