Learn to breathe

Life starts and ends with a breath, with about 700 million breaths in between. That is based on the average breaths a person takes every day (21 600 or so) and since I am an optimistic person, I expect you to live to 90. At 45 years old you are half way there and you have lived about 16 500 days and you have already taken over 356 million breaths. More if you regularly exercise, sing or smoke. You have the same amount left.

The point is that most people have never stopped to think, “How many breaths do I have left?” and “Am I breathing well with every one of them?”. It seems like a silly question and if you are reading this of course you are breathing but breathing well will enable you to become more present, calm, healthier and happier.

Many people do not breathe properly and they often overuse the wrong muscles around the tops of their shoulders and neck, hence giving them aches in those areas. In many cases this is a consequence of sitting hunched forwards, which compresses your ribcage and you cannot effectively use the big breathing muscle: the diaphragm. Look this one up as it is directly connected to your heart, lungs and all other organs. So if you learn to breathe properly expanding your diaphragm, you can move your kidneys up to 600 metres a day.

How? Simple: Keep your shoulders relaxed, breathe into your belly expanding it out and back in. Repeat 21 600 times a day (unrealistic but I told you I am an optimist). Anna Hlavsova is a Notting Hill integrated health practitionerinfinism.

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