Breathe Deep

In a given day how often do you breathe deeply? In a stressed out world you can unconsciously end up breathing short and shallow breaths, this can reduce oxygen intake and further drive the stress response.

Breathing is an interesting function of the body and arguably the only one that is both unconscious and consciously controlled. Think about it, until you start dreading this you were breathing without paying attention to it. It happens automatically. But you can also slow down or speed up your breathing pattern at your own will.

Rapid, shallow breathing is a natural response to a stressful situation. Deeper, slower breathing is a natural response when you are relaxed. Taking conscious control of your breathing during the day, especially when you are stressed, can help calm your nervous system so it can focus on healing, digesting and creativity.

Try this simple breathing exercise each day to calm you mind and body.

4-7-8 Breathing

This technique was developed by Dr Andrew Weil as a great technique to calm your body when lying in bed at night to assist you falling asleep or to calm your mind and body during the day.

  • Exhale forcefully through the mouth
  • Close your mouth and silently breathe in through the nose as you mentally count to 4
  • Hold the breath for a count of 7
  • Exhale forcefully through the mouth for a count of 8

Do this a total of four times and repeat twice daily to maximise the benefits of the technique. The ratio of the inhalation to exhalation is more important than the overall length of time. At first you may not be able to hold your breath very long so count faster but as your body becomes more efficient over time you will find that you can really slow the process down.

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How NOT To Set Goals

We all have goals… Health goals. Financial goals. Personal Goals.

 

When you ask yourself “what exactly is my goal?” it seems easy to answer. Just name how much weight you want to lose, how much money you want to have or what kind of relationship you want to have with your spouse.

 

That’s how most people do it… But are they doing it right?

 

Not really… If it were that easy, we’d all be washing dollar bills over our chiselled abs while sunbathing on a picture-perfect date with our partner.

 

Proper goal setting requires a plan to get things done. It needs to be centred around ACTION as opposed to results. You can want and dream all you want, but until you DO something about it, it will just remain your want or dream.

 

Examples of “result-based goals”:

  • I want to lose 30 pounds
  • Deadlifting double my weight would be cool
  • I want more energy during the day to play with my kids

 

Now there’s nothing wrong with these types of goals. Wanting something is a starting point and it’s always helpful to start with the end in mind so that you know where you want to end up. But wanting is NOT enough.

 

Why?

 

Because, often times, we can’t control results. They’re affected by environmental factors (super busy at work, exam week, kids get sick) and physical factors (you travel a lot, you’re getting older, your injury or illness is holding you back).

 

You can’t control your body’s state, but you can control what you do with it.

 

That’s why “ACTION-based goal” are so crucial. They focus on what you do have control over.

 

Here’s an example: “I want to lose 30 pounds” (RESULTS), “I’m going to focus on eating slowly this week and note how I feel” (ACTION).

 

Now it’s not obvious how “slow eating” relates to losing the 30 pounds, but it helps you pay more attention to what you’re eating and over time will make it easier to make better food choices as well as feel more satisfied for longer. Once that becomes an established habit, you can move on to building other successful health habits like drinking more water, going for walks, working out 3 times a week, etc.

 

This way you also won’t be fixed on the result and attached to “failure”. If you struggle to start a habit, just make it easier for yourself – if you can’t eat slowly for every meal, schedule time during the day to eat one meal slowly having a nice chat with the family or friends.

 

See how that works? All you have to do is change the frame with which you look at your goals and all of a sudden what you have to do becomes clear and you’ll be on your way to establishing positive, sustainable habits for your success.

 

Happy goal-setting!

 

Your Trusted Auckland Chiropractor

Contact Revolution Chiropractic – Leading  Chiropractor Auckland

To Schedule your FREE CONSULTATION at Revolution Chiropractic E-mail or Call us on 09 418 3718.  

You can also book online here !


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