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Create calm — with a triangle!


Lotus mudra

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Hello, I’m Bronni. Welcome to my new WellBeing blog, Creating Calm, which I hope will help you to press ‘pause’ for a while and infuse your life with a little more ‘aahhhh’… In my posts, I’ll draw on my background as a restorative yoga expert and CEO of a busy household of five and shares tips, insights and tricks to help you get from frazzled to feel-good, fast!

First up: how to create calm through a simple breathing exercise.

Most of us would confidently predict that planned activities like presenting a speech, sitting a job interview and taking a test will create an icky mind-state of nervousness and unease. Jittery feelings can also creep up unexpectedly and unpredictably, such as a traffic jam turning a usually pleasant commute into a panic about being late for work.

Alternate Side Breathing is an easy-to-learn, quick and practical way to calm a frazzled mind and reinstate balance.

Stressful episodes like these can have us clambering for an effective way to get back on track. Alternate Side Breathing is an easy-to-learn, quick and practical way to calm a frazzled mind and reinstate balance. Plus, this handy technique is completely portable and invisible to those around you, so you can practise it anywhere, at anytime.

Alternate Side Breathing is based on the yogic pranayama (breathwork) method Nadi Shodhana (alternate nostril breathing) and helps to harmonise the flow of energy between left and right sides of the brain to induce clarity and tranquility. It’s simple, and requires just a little concentration and imagination. Follow the steps below to regain your composure, fast:

  • Get comfortable. Sit or lie down in a symmetrical position; allow the body to relax. Close your eyes if you like.
  • Visualise. Imagine your body resting inside a triangular shape. Picture a line between your feet forming the base of your triangle. The space between your eyebrows will be the top, or apex, of your triangle. The imaginary line from each foot to the eyebrow centre forms the sides of the triangle.
  • Find the breath. Take your attention to the nostrils and simply watch your inhalation flowing into the nostrils, the exhalation leaving the body through the nostrils. Watch a few cycles of breath with a gentle awareness.
  • Trace the breath. Imagine your next inhalation originating at your left foot, or the left corner of your triangle. As you continue to inhale, imagine the breath moving up the left side of your triangle, until you reach the apex, at the eyebrow centre, as you complete the inhale. Keep the breath relaxed, avoid any straining or holding. Pause. Now, as you exhale, imagine the breath moving down the right side of your triangle, from eyebrow centre to right foot. Pause.
  • Reverse the pattern. With the new round of breath, mentally trace the triangle shape in reverse; breath in up the right side, breath out down the left side. You’ve completed one round when you breath out and down the left side.
  • Continue. Breathe in this inverted V shape for another 3-7 rounds
  • Finish and observe. After 3-7 rounds of Alternate Side Breathing, return to your own natural pattern of breathing. Take few moments to observe how you feel; hopefully a little more settled …

Here are some more uses for Alternate Side Breathing:

  • Can’t sleep? Switch counting sheep for Alternate Side Breathing.
  • Bored? Make use of waiting time in queues by doing a few rounds of breathing.
  • Feeling scattered? The mental element of this technique builds focus and concentration

 



 

Bronni Page | WELLBEING COMMUNITY BLOGGER

Bronni Page is nuts about living a life full of fun, adventure and connection. She’s quite the "word nerd" and uses this super-power as a health and wellness writer, crafting engaging articles to inspire everyday people be their healthiest, most wonderful selves.

She’s also a qualified yoga instructor, specialising in restorative yoga (the super-relaxing, snoozy, cruisy style).

When she’s not writing for clients or embarrassing her three kids with hilarious mum jokes, you’ll find Bronni searching out the best almond cappuccino in her hometown of Newcastle, Australia.