Allie Geer, Yoga Medicine® Registered Therapeutic Specialist, helps you take charge of your health and wellness with this quick five minute meditation and breath sequence.
Meditation and breathing techniques to keep you grounded.
We all know that the holidays are busy and our time tends to get stretched thin. This can leave us feeling frazzled, lacking focus, stressed, and even depleted, which in turn can impact our health. Take charge of your health and wellness with just a few minutes a day to not only improve your overall wellbeing, but to shift your perspective and stay grounded this holiday season.
Retreat from the hustle and bustle with this quick five minute grounding meditation and breath sequence. The nice thing about this practice is that it can be done anywhere: in a bathroom at a party, in bed before you get up, on the chair lift at the ski resort, in the parking lot at the mall, there is always an opportunity to check in with your internal environment.
1. Find a comfortable seat anywhere: in the car, in your bed, on a meditation cushion, or in your closet. Wherever it is, to begin, take a moment to check in and be an observer to the experience in your body. Notice your breath enter and leave through the nostrils. Notice the rise and fall of your chest and abdomen with each breath. Notice any tension in your shoulders, neck, jaw or anywhere else.
2. After taking a few moments to arrive, take three grounded breaths with a full breath in though the nose and an audible sigh out through the mouth. With every exhale, allow your sit bones to ground deeper into the support underneath you. Continue for two more rounds. Inhaling through the nose and exhaling through the mouth.
3. Now deepen your awareness of the breath with a pranayama exercise referred to in some traditions as Anuloma pranayama. Take your right hand and fold in your index & middle finger to place your thumb and fourth finger on each side of the bridge of your nose. Place your fingers just below the cartilage on the nostrils. Before putting any pressure on the nose take a full breath in and out. Begin by gently closing off your right nostril as you inhale through the left nostril. Then close off the left nostril and partially close the right nostril as you exhale through a partially closed right nostril. This action should mimic the sound of a bicycle tire deflating (think deflating tension and stress). Continue through this cycle of breath for 5-10 rounds. Inhaling through the left nostril, and exhaling through a partially closed right nostril to stimulate the parasympathetic or relaxation response.
4. After your tenth round, release the hands to a comfortable position by your sides and bring back the observer’s mind. Notice the ebb and flow of your natural breath once again, and notice the effects of this practice on your body and mind. Take a full breath in and exhale through the mouth. You are now back on your way to a grounded holiday season.
Enjoy all that is around you and allow yourself to be in the moment, present with those who surround you. Most importantly, allow yourself to appreciate the fullness of the season!