Breath Taking Flight

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Have you ever simply watched and felt a bird taking flight….being present to every nuance of wing, body, air, sound….those precious moments just before the launch?  Swept with awe at this natural way to travel from one place to the next could be so filled with grace and strength.

Inhale remembering that this is natures way of receiving the best of what the body needs…..like a bird preparing for flight taking in everything that will sustain it during lift off…expanding soft belly, ribcage and back body ….resting in the pause to take it all in…..exhaling into pure fluid motion, lengthening as if the breath is soaring on a cushion of air that always promises to be there for the next inhale after the pregnant pause.

How much we take for granted with simply breathing from one moment to the next of our lives here.  Taking the wisdom of Thich Nhat Hanh when he says, “smile, breathe and go slowly” into the fullness of any single moment and falling into the rapture of a full breath in flight – ease filled, fluid and resting in the biology of what gives life.

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Take this moment now and be deeply grateful for your breath as the inhale slowly prepares for launch, pauses in the up sweep of expanded wings, soars on the exhale, and drops back to Earth during the grounded pause.  Breathing meditation.  Who wouldn’t smile…..?

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photo(58)Gaye Abbott, RYT assists individuals to drop the layers that cover the natural innate blueprint we came in with and reveal, through a combination of evolutionary energy work, Jin Shin Jyutus, Reiki and breath re-patterning, the larger purpose and co-creative expression that we are here for.

For those interested in receiving private sessions please contact Gaye at: JoyfulGaye@NaturalPassages.com.  Travel to your location in the U.S. or globally is available.  Please inquire.  Skype: gaye.abbott

OTHER BLOGS BY GAYE ABBOTT:
www.WildlyFreewoman.com
www.NaturalWealthJournal.com

Breath-Book-coverW2(1)Give Us This Day Our Daily Breath Preview, Reviews and purchase links can be found here:

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Freedom Is The Oxygen of The Soul

“Freedom is the oxygen of the soul. “
Moshe Dayan

mansfirstbreath3

Did you know that you aren’t really breathing? It is the planet’s atmospheric pressure that sends breath into the body. With the process we call breathing, our body simply changes its shape in such a way that the pressure in the chest cavity is lowered, thus permitting air to be pushed into the body during inhalation. During passive breathing, as when sleeping, it is the universe that breathes for us. On the exhalation, we do nothing; the body tissues that have stretched during inhalation simply spring back to their original shape.”  Anna Hunt

When we consider that the cosmos is doing our breathing for us it reflects an unlimited potential for freedom.  The deep interconnection with everything around and beyond us feeds and nourishes our individual and interconnected lives at a level so vast that it is rather mind boggling.  Even the trees participate as the lungs of the Earth!

Imagine that when you are asleep (and awake!) there is nothing that you are having “to do”, but instead are gifted with the experience of complete freedom and support in simply being.  You are being kept alive and vibrant by forces beyond your control, ones that are intimately collaborating on your behalf.

The oxygen in your blood powers your metabolism, circulation and your ability to heal.  Decrease the levels in oxygen and you will be prone to illness, mental/emotional instability, and weak physical and mental performance.

You receive air and you give it back again without any effort on your part.  The eternal circle of giving and receiving born out of the freedom of living in this human body.

Since we have this much freedom within this crucial biological action that keeps us alive and vibrant, then there is no reason not to live within our fullest potential by expressing that unique, rich, juicy soul purpose here and now – to acknowledge that the natural world and the much larger cosmos is collaborating to keep us alive.

If you were given a gift of breath from the Earth/Universe as basic as this wouldn’t you do something with the freedom that this gives you to play in and reciprocate?

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photo(58)Gaye Abbott, RYT assists individuals to drop the layers that cover the natural innate blueprint we came in with and reveal, through a combination of evolutionary energy work, Jin Shin Jyutus, Reiki and breath re-patterning, the larger purpose and co-creative expression that we are here for.

For those interested in receiving private sessions please contact Gaye at: JoyfulGaye@NaturalPassages.com.  Travel to your location in the U.S. or globally is available.  Please inquire.  Skype: gaye.abbott

OTHER BLOGS BY GAYE ABBOTT:
www.WildlyFreewoman.com
www.NaturalWealthJournal.com

Breath-Book-coverW2(1)Give Us This Day Our Daily Breath Preview, Reviews and purchase links can be found here:

http://gayeabbott.com/books/

Drink In The Breath

Image by Louie Schwartzberg

Image by Louie Schwartzberg

Drink in the magnificent world that has been given to you.

Take a full breath and know that this very inspiration

could be the one that the Amazon rain forest, or the tree outside of your window

has gifted to you

from a deep interconnection that yearns to remain unbroken.

(South America) - Amazon

Drink in another full breath and know that every single thing that is alive now,

and has existed before this moment in time

shares this rich resource with you.

Sip the nectar of your next in breath and be grateful for the very act of breathing

for it is the Source that keeps you alive

within this miracle of embodiment.

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Now,  as you let down your defenses

and dismantle the timbers of your protection,

allow the exhale to slip  from your body

unimpeded as a flow of water

leaping off the edge of the cliff side

falling into the depths of the pool below

instantly connecting with the elements

that create life – your life.

Nourishing the soul of being….

Amazon Rainforest South America_4

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WEBSITEhttp://www.GayeAbbott.com941546_10201139084457154_1085573193_n

OTHER BLOGS BY GAYE ABBOTT:
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Breath-Book-coverW2(1)Give Us This Day Our Daily Breath Preview, Reviews and purchase links can be found here: http://gayeabbott.com/books/

How you breathe is the way in which you live your life.  If this statement is true, then how would you like to breathe?  Shallow and restricted or full bodied and naturally?

Use a focus each week for the entire year to promote the vibrant aliveness that is your natural birth right!

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The Path of Opening

Angel Oak Tree in Angel Oak Park, on Johns Island, Southern Carolina.

Angel Oak Tree in Angel Oak Park, on Johns Island, Southern Carolina.

“The person who breathes deep and easy, who holds minimal tension in the shoulders, who lifts the heart and chest – she/he has a very different experience of life. The root of the word courage means heart.  When we collapse the chest, we become easily dis-couraged, dis-heartened.  When we fill our space and widen our chest, there is suddenly room for connection, purpose and passion. ”  Victoria Castle in The Trance Of Scarcity – Hey Stop Holding Your Breath and Start Living Your Life, pg 64

Reading this passage from Victoria’s book this morning I was inspired to write this blog post and also made painfully aware of my own bodies tension and contraction.  As I sat to meditate it became very clear that I was clenching my mouth and jaw for no particular reason.  When checking with my breath it was contracted as well!  This most likely represents many years of muscular armoring in perceived unsafe situations along the way.

The “story” that went along with this contraction spoke to me quite clearly – “Hold tight!  You don’t know what is coming at you next!”  What a terrible story to live by, yet I am willing to bet that many of us hold this type of story in our bodies and psyche – most often unconsciously.  I know that when I live in contraction the tension keeps me disturbed, off balance and attending to what is wrong – or in Victoria’s words “holds us in the Trance of Scarcity”…..  and I say perpetuates “struggle mode”.

The amazing tree above spoke to me of the OPEN way in which we are meant to be.  This Angel Oak is wide open, spreading, begging to be connected with (as there are so many lovely branches to sit upon), and completely available to you, I or anyone/anything.  She has learned surrender, openness, trust, and wisdom from her years of being present to the moment of nature.  She is completely embodied in her tree elderhood.

We too can be in that flow by coming out of the daily creation of separation and into the natural state of belonging.  When we are out of this flow our breath is shallow, or we stop breathing for periods of time; our shoulders are slumped; brows furrowed; tense necks; clenched jaws; and a collapsed chest.  When we release these contractions and the stories that have created them, our world opens up and we naturally “belong” without any effort on our part.

So, I leave you with some identifying markers for the state of OPENNESS.  Remember that this state comes with a full opennessembodiment of sensation and breath.  What we embody, we become!

OPEN is: (from The Trance of Scarcity)

Ease…Prevailing trust….relaxed body….effortless breathing….”can do” attitude….collaborative….curious, asking questions….see opportunities…..generous……willing to take risks…….laugh easily at self…….energized……fighting FOR (not against)…..resilient….grateful…..releasing things easily…..make clear requests and agreements…..generative, accountable……wholehearted – and coming from your wholeness.

When we each inhabit this place of openness it not only affects others, but inspires them to open as well!  I extend my hand to each of you on this path of opening.  Though the body memory may want to go back into a contracted survival mode – your willingness to be aware of sensation and breath will give you a choice.  The way in which we breathe and embody is the way in which we live our lives.  How do you want to live yours??  Create and live by a different story!!

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941546_10201139084457154_1085573193_nOTHER BLOGS BY GAYE ABBOTT:
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Give Us This Day Our Daily Breath Preview, Reviews and purchase links can be found here:Breath-Book-coverW2(1)
http://resonancewithlife.com/daily-breath-book/

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Magical Breathing Space

fireflies

Having just returned home from an early evening walk…that magical time when light is fading, birds outlined in the sky heading for their evening resting places, and the sounds of insects everywhere.  A few years ago I spent some time in Vermont and remember with great delight the first time – YES, the very first time – that I saw a firefly.  Seems that they don’t have those magical creatures in California where I lived for most of my life.

It was with absolute awe and delight that I watched these insects of light create a sort of fairyland in the surrounding fields and gardens.  I remember feeling like a small child who was somehow transported to a magical land where the path was lit by very small creatures especially for me.

Tonight, in the periphery of my vision, I caught a flash of light.  I could hardly believe that it might have been a firefly for this is my 3rd summer in Austin and I don’t remember seeing any the previous 2 summers.  But true to their magical character they proved to me that indeed they were out this evening as I spotted flashes of light along the path I was walking.

I watched my breath deepen and open and realized that it was not just the fireflies that were magical.  It was my inhale and exhale that stopped me in my tracks.  Some huge number leapt out at me from my brains store of facts taken from the many workshops on breathing that I have done over the years.

The average respiration rate for a person at rest is about 16 breaths per minute.
This means on average, we breathe about 960 breaths an hour
23040 breaths a day
8409600 a year
If a person lives to 80, then that means on average they will take 672,768,000 breaths in a lifetime!

(Note:  this does not include that our breath rate is faster as a child, and that breathing rate does increase when we exercise!)

For each breath we take there is potential.  Like the fireflies that I did not notice the two summers prior to this one, many breaths have passed in my lifetime without gratitude for this magical process that gives us life.  Although science can answer our questions about why the firefly lights up at the end of its body,  and how our breath physiologically occurs – what cannot be answered completely is the source and creation of light and breath.

May we always remember that there is mystery and magic to life.  Each breath treasured and celebrated!

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OTHER BLOGS BY GAYE ABBOTT:
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Breath-Book-coverW2(3)Give Us This Day Our Daily Breath Preview, Reviews and purchase links can be found here:
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Return To Deep Harmony

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My recent offering of a class called Decrease Anxiety, Indulge Inner Peace has been an awakening on many levels.  Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States affecting 40 million adults age 18 and older.  That equals 18.9% of the U.S. population and doesn’t even include those under 18.

Shallow constricted breathing is one aspect of the emotional posture of anxiety.  Our entire system turns acidic with this type of breathing, our secondary breathing muscles in the neck, shoulders and upper chest become tight and contracted,  and the stress response is activated over and over again.

Did you know that the average person reaches peak respiratory function and lung capacity in their mid-20’s  As they continue to age they lose between 9%-25% of respiratory capacity for every decade of life.  The findings resulting from a 5,000 person clinical study group observed over a 30 year span showed that the way a person breathes is the primary measure of potential life span. (Framingham study).  This tells me that we can change the decline in respiratory function by breathing more fully as often as possible and potentially decrease anxiety!

“For breath is life, and if you breathe well you will live long on Earth”  Sanskrit

That full diaphragmatic breath that was so easy when we were infants somehow became distorted and contracted as we learned over the years that is was often not safe to be completely ourselves.  This “shut down” on so many levels is perhaps the core reason why there is so much shallow breathing and anxiety these days.

In addition, the minds default for survival always seems to go to the past and to the future to supposedly protect us from making the same mistakes or creating new ones.  We resist the fact that everything changes.  It is the moment to moment experience of life NOW that somehow gets lost in the fray!

A key to opening back to what Deepak Chopra calls “deep harmony of body, mind and Spirit that was yours at birth” is a full unrestricted breath…one after another.  Is our goal to always breathe in this way?  Well, perhaps intention is a better word here for if we can be aware of our breathing throughout the day, and at least start and end our day with at least 5 minutes of conscious breathing practice, our body will start to remember what it was like to be that open and unrestricted.  Our hearts will celebrate as they are massaged by the diaphragm and open to love, and our minds will once again remind us of the capacity for wholeness and interconnection.

We won’t always be able to breathe this fully, but at least we can have the intention.  It takes practice and a willingness to live the moment.  Here is a mantra that you might want to use in your daily breath practice:

On the inhale silently say to yourself “alive” and on the exhale “now”.  Then rest in the “pause” before the inhale naturally comes back in again.  The moment is a gift of awareness.  This also can be a great “break”  during a very busy day when you realize that you are forgetting to breathe, or in the midst of emotional, mental, or physical stress. 

As Dennis Lewis says in the last of The Ten Secrets of Authentic Breathing, “Remember you are a breathing being, alive right now and here.  Let yourself feel the mystery and the miracle of your breath and your life as often as you can.”

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OTHER BLOGS BY GAYE ABBOTT:
www.WildlyFreeWoman.com
www.NaturalWealthJournal.com

WEBSITE:  www.ResonanceWithLife.com

Breath-Book-coverW2(1)Give Us This Day Our Daily Breath Preview, Reviews and purchase links can be found here:
http://resonancewithlife.com/daily-breath-book/

Cherish Yourself Within The Breath


“As you breathe in cherish yourself. As you breathe out cherish all beings.”

H.H. The Dalai Lama

As 2013 begins we may take a look at our lives to see and feel where we can be more of our authentic selves, increase our happiness, love more, achieve more, create more…..and it goes on.  It there was one intention for the year, only one mind you, what would that be?

For me I ask to be mindful of my breath.  The full, natural optimal breath that was given to me at birth.  Breathing fully is perhaps the best way to value yourself and your overall health.

Dr. Andrew Weil, father of Integrative Medicine says it this way, “If I had to limit my advice on healthier living to just one tip, it would be simply to learn how to breathe correctly.  From my own experience and from working with patients, I have come to believe that proper breathing is the master key to good health.”

Many of us find ourselves breathing from a very shallow place when we even notice our breath.  This shallow breathing is an integral part of what I call the anxiety cycle.  Shallow breathing tells the body to protect and be on guard.  What unseen forces are out there to get me?  …and it takes us into the future or the past, forgetting the precious moment we have right now.

On the other hand a full breath activated via the diaphragm with soft belly and full ribcage expansion tells our body and our 377365_284005775041434_1705234306_npsyche that all is well.  Ahhh….looking forward to the next full breath, the next life moment.  Do you want to live a full, healthy and expanded life?

DID YOU KNOW…The average person reaches peak respiratory function and lung capacity in their mid 20′s? As they continue to age they lose between 9% and 25% of respiratory capacity for every decade of their life! The findings resulting from a 5,200-person clinical study group observed over a 30-year span showed that the way a person breathes is the primary measure of potential life span. (From Framingham study) Do As One

The breath practice above suggested by the Dalai Lama is simple and effective, or the simple words of “I am breathing in” and “I am breathing out” for 10 breaths, with eyes open or closed, and in a posture of comfort is one way of breaking the anxiety cycle….and putting your focus on enhancing the way in which you are presently breathing and living!

Begin 2013 with cherishing your breath, yourself….and all beings.

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WEBSITEwww.ResonanceWithLife.com

OTHER BLOGS BY GAYE ABBOTT:
www.WildlyFreeWoman.com
www.NaturalWealthJournal.com

Breath-Book-coverW2(3)Give Us This Day Our Daily Breath Preview, Reviews and purchase links can be found here:
http://resonancewithlife.com/daily-breath-book/