The Healing Power of Breathwork Therapy
Breathwork can only be understood once its experienced. It is a simple, yet powerful self-healing experience created by focused rhythmic breathing. Originating in India over 2000 years ago, the Pranayama Breath Work meditation is a perfect antidote for our busy western minds. As a culture, we have a hard time slowing down our thoughts and just being with our experience. Our minds are active, always thinking, judging, planning, analyzing, ruminating, remembering the past, or worrying about the future. Breathwork allows the mind to relax, giving you a chance to heal by accessing the wisdom inside your heart. Breathwork helps move stuck energy, be it mental, emotional, physical, or spiritual, bringing your life back into balance.
The first five to seven minutes of breathwork are usually very challenging and the most important. The mind is trying to stay in control and does not like this new unfamiliar breathing pattern, it does not want to let go. This is when all your resistance will come up. The mind will say things like “I can’t do this, it’s too hard, I don’t like this, I’m thirsty, my lips are dry.” But after five to seven minutes, enough oxygen has reached the brain that it begins to relax. The increased oxygen alkalizes the body by reducing the acidity in the blood. The hypothalamus gland begins to release endorphins, which in turn stimulates the other ductless glands in the body (the chakras) and your energy begins to move. Most people will begin to experience tingling in their hands, legs, or face because of the movement of energy in their body. As the brain begins to relax and emotions open and move more freely when the endorphins are flowing.
Anything that needs healing will be brought to the attention of the breath. Many people cry during breathwork meditation, as they release sadness from the past that has been keeping their heart chakra closed. Or there may be no awareness of what the sadness is about, just the experience of it moving through the heart. Some people will get cold no matter how warm the room is or how many blankets they have on them, as old fears are released from their bodies.
You may think of something you have not thought of in years and realize that you have been holding onto a painful experience your mind has forgotten about. You may realize how angry you have been about something, and suddenly be able to release it and forgive. Breathwork may seek out old physical injuries in the body that still have stuck energy. Or the places you carry tension and stress will light up and will feel uncomfortable for a while until the stuck energy is released.
Often times, breathwork will clear out stuck energy before physical symptoms have started to show up, preventing you from having to experience that illness or disease. Breathwork will continue to bump against the block until it finally breaks through causing a cathartic release. Once our awareness is brought to the problem, it will begin to flow. Breathwork causes this to happen automatically without us having to figure it out.
Anything the Breath discovers, it has the power to heal. The Breath is the fuel to moving stuck energy in the body. We all possess an innate wisdom capable of healing our lives, when we quiet the mind, we can access to this information. Many people will have a spiritual experience during breathwork, feeling the presence of a loved one who has passed on, experiencing their own divinity, or the love of their higher power.
Former addicts have reported that the feeling they were always seeking is what they experienced during the breathwork and are so grateful to have found a healthy safe way to experience that inner peace. Breathwork raises our vibration so that our spirit can come into our body, and is a powerful journey that heals you mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually. It clears the nervous system of trauma and pain from the past and helps detoxify the body.
Once everything from the past has been released, practicing breathwork regularly is like taking an internal shower that washes away daily stress. It becomes easier to think clearly and make positive choices. The need to self-medicate or numb out to cope with life disappears. Like exercising regularly, breathwork keeps you healthy, balanced, and helps develops your intuition. Life becomes less stressful and your ability to deal with things becomes easier. Self-compassion, self-love and forgiveness become automatic.
The negative thoughts in your head eventually just go away, leaving you free to live a more fulfilling life. Because of the resistance that occurs at the beginning of breathwork, most people initially need someone else to hold space for them and guide them through the experience. Breathwork can be done in individual sessions or in groups. Individual sessions are powerful because all the attention is focused on you; groups are powerful in a different way, because you can feel the energy of everyone in the room and it creates a powerful momentum.
Breathwork is just one of the powerful holistic healing modalities that we incorporate into our women’s addiction treatment programs here at Villa Kali Ma. Please contact us today for more information or to begin your own journey toward healing and long-lasting recovery.