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Wet Noodle Posse | Blog

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

The Simple Benefits of Taking a Deep Breath

March Madness…weather, lions, lambs, round-ball. The Ides of March. The Rites of Spring.

I don’t know about you, but where I live we had January and February Madness and when this month is over I’m sure we’ll see at least a bit of April, May and June Madness. And so on and so on...

Everyone knows life is crazy nowadays; our recent blogs and our readers’ comments bear that out. But what do you do when things get so crazy you don’t know what to do to calm things down?

How about taking a nice deep breath?

Think about it. Just a second or two to check your approach to a problem, to pause before you speak, to get some oxygen into your brain before you explode, use words you don’t normally use in public, or worse, say yes when you mean no.

Author Janet Evanovich’s character Stephanie Plum calls it a “mental doughnut.” If I had Stephanie’s life, I’d be taking a lot of mental doughnuts.

So far, the deep breath method is working for me. All I have to do is remember to breathe…

How about you? What’s your life-calming device?


At 9:19 AM, Blogger Patricia W. said...

A book. Always a book. I can shut out whatever's going on around me and find the solace I need.

At 10:15 AM, Blogger Mo H said...

Something new for me is knitting. I find needlework relaxing. I used to like needlepoint, but haven't done it in a while.

At 10:26 AM, Blogger Diane Gaston said...

For me, the breath is saying YES to lunch with/dinner with/visit with friends even when I think I don't have the time. It always rejuvenates me.

At 11:34 AM, Blogger Karen said...

Excellent suggestions! Mo, I think I might just get out the crocheting tonight!

At 12:30 PM, Blogger Ladyhawk said...

Me, too, Patricia. Books give me a chance to refocus. Music can be helpful. A quick walk around the house or outside is something I learned from my dog. :-)

I thought it silly when my yoga instructor kept repeating, "Don't forget to breathe." How do you forget something so fundamental? Then one day she was helping me improve my pose, and I found myself lightheaded. She murmured, "Don't forget to breathe." She was right. I was concentrating so completely on being exactly right that I'd actually been holding my breath. Do not forget to breathe.

At 12:32 PM, Blogger Lee McKenzie said...

For me, taking a walk is a perfect way to unwind and refocus my energy.

My favorite walking trail takes me past a duck pond, and I always stop to watch them dabble. I especially love going there in the spring, after the newborn ducklings have hatched, and watching the moms take their babies for a swim. I could watch them all day!

At 1:48 PM, Blogger Theresa Ragan said...

Lee, I LOVE watching ducks with their little babies...Nature does tend to do it for me. I keep all the curtains and blinds open while I write and enjoy the view. Breathing helps too and NOT filling free time with things I'd rather not do. I keep my schedule pretty clear. And of course, exercise and a few vegetables every now and again doesn't hurt! :)

Thanks for the reminder to breathe, Karen!

At 2:37 PM, Blogger Terry Odell said...

I'm a reader too. Of course that's hardly a solution if you're caught in a 'real life' kind of situation. "Excuse me, but let me go finish a chapter and then I can respond to that totally idiotic comment you just made," might not work. But I've learned to hit "save as draft" in my email program, not "send" when I know I'm reacting emotionally.

At 3:49 PM, Blogger Dianna Love said...

I'm deep in the writing cave right now so my break is to walk out to get the mail and sit on the front steps in the sun reading everything, even the junk mail. I feel as though I need more sunshine when I'm running crazy.

We have two geese that return every year to have their babies in the lake behind the house across the street in my neighborhood. I call them Gertrude and Heathcliff (after Red Skelton's pair. They come up and walk down the street chatting with each other or sit on a front yard to just hang out, nibble at grass. I watch them for a bit then go back to the grind.

Good post!

At 8:36 PM, Blogger Louisa Cornell said...

A good book is always a great unwind for me.

And sitting on my back porch listening to the world - the real world - the one where the wind blows, the leaves rustle, the birds sing and squirrels chatter. That's the real world.

And spending time with my rescued dogs. Most of them were quite close to death before I took them in for a variety of reasons. They each had their own problems and issues. Yet, now, they act as if they don't have a care in the world. They live to play and take a nap, and eat, and beg for a belly rub, and take another nap and stare up at me adoringly. Everyone should have at least one creature in this world who thinks they hung the moon. It's really great for the soul. I saved my dog's lives one time. They save mine every day.

At 9:47 PM, Blogger Merrillee said...

I'm with Lee. Taking a walk is the perfect way to relieve all kinds of stress, especially when the walk is on the beach where I live. My neighborhood is also a beautiful place to walk, too, when the weather isn't quite right for the beach.

At 9:26 AM, Blogger Theresa Ragan said...

Everyone should have at least one creature in this world who thinks they hung the moon. It's really great for the soul. I saved my dog's lives one time. They save mine every day.

Louisa, that got me all choked up. Very nice.

At 12:05 PM, Blogger Ladyhawk said...

What Theresa said; me, too, Louisa!


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