Earlier this week a computer I was working on stopped responding. The screen froze. The little wheel was spinning, spinning, spinning. My blood pressure was rising, rising, rising.
What did I do? I rebooted the computer. And it worked fine the rest of the night. I took a deep breath. And I worked fine for the rest of the night.
Taking a breath is like a Ctrl+Alt+Del for your brain.
I had the wonderful opportunity to attend the Search Inside Yourself Leadership Institute last week. We talked about how mindfulness leads to outstanding leadership, stellar performance, and happiness. I've been reading books about happiness for years, and they all include the importance of mindfulness.
And one way to be mindful is to focus on the breath. It brings you right into the moment. Taking a deep breath in and observing that in breath, taking a deep breath out and observing the out breath, pausing to observe the pause that happens between breaths... this simple exercise is extremely powerful.
The benefits of deep breathing are well-documented. A quick Google search will provide you with lots of great information, videos and techniques. But if you don't have time or patience for that, just remember the next time you are stressed, to take a deep breath (or two, or three). You'll feel a difference immediately and you'll be in a better position to respond to the stressor and to move forward with your day in a positive way.
Photo by Allef Vinicius on Unsplash