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I have struggled lately with patience in the things that annoy me. The constant chatter/noise both in my head and outside of it have made me feel lacking in peace. Add to that the stresses of our daily life in a developing country with 4 kids (2 with attachment issues) and I find myself quick to snap, eager to hide in my room, and far too easily annoyed.

In my yoga practice the other morning, I felt the lightbulb go off in my head as I pushed myself deeper into a pose. It was a revelation for me and I knew immediately that I wanted to try to apply this to my daily life. The idea is simple, yet challenging: breathe into the tension.

In yoga, there are pieces of our bodies that will feel tension as they awaken and stretch beyond what we have always been able to do. We breathe in deeply – focusing our breath into easing those tensions and healing that area of discomfort. I will literally close my eyes in these moments and visualize myself breathing healing, clean energy from my breath into the part of my body that is tense, then visualizing the exhale breath being whatever was keeping me from deepening the posture.

My AHA! moment: What if I began to apply this practice to my daily life? What if instead of snapping/hiding/getting annoyed/[insert any negative reaction here] I chose to breathe deeply into that space – contemplating what it is that is causing my tension, stress or anxiety?

What if we allowed our breath to do what it was meant to do – give us life? We get ONE shot at this life and I have the sneaking suspicion that God never wanted it to be an unhappy one. I think He planned out our lives to be full of kindness, joy, abundant love, and energy … otherwise, what was the point? I just can’t imagine my Heavenly Father sitting back to watch the bad movie that is our lives when we don’t live it to our fullest potential!

It is worth a try, isn’t it?

Here are a few of my favorite things for calming down, breathing into tension, and chilling the heck out:

Hear and Now app

Hear and Now app reminds me to breathe and even checks my heart rate a few times a day. I programmed my app to remind me at the 3 times of day I noticed I was most stressed out.

Yoga is always an excellent way to reduce stress and anxiety - has lots of videos and posts to help

Yoga is always an excellent way to reduce stress and anxiety – has lots of videos and posts to help