breath of life

breath of life

Expressions of Heartfelt Experiences

Every word that flows from my being is an expression of my heartfelt experiences in life. I am immensely grateful for the insights that come to me, as they bring ease and comfort to my existence. However, I am aware that some may interpret my writings as an attempt to convey a sense of having it all figured out, presenting a facade of having my life perfectly arranged. In truth, like every stage of my journey, there are both positives and challenges. My character is akin to a car in constant need of maintenance.

The Purpose of Writing: Introspection and Alignment

The purpose of my writing is simply to provide a platform for introspection, to contemplate my beliefs, and to ponder on the art of living, aligning my actions with my convictions.

The Paramount Importance of Connecting with One's Breath

If I were not so attached to my writings on this platform, there is one message I would emphasize: the paramount importance of connecting with one's breath in all healing endeavors. No other practice should take precedence over this act of attuning to the breath, not even therapy. Therapy, I would place as the second or third item on my list of self-improvement endeavors. When engaging in therapy, it becomes crucial to have a means of regulating heightened anxiety that may arise from resurfacing emotions. Deep breathing serves as a powerful tool in such moments, allowing us to maintain control and composure.

The Philosophy of Personal Growth and Character Development

I hold a sense that when I am older and revisit my own writings, only a small portion will evoke immense pride, leaving me astounded at my ability to articulate certain truths. However, I acknowledge that much of what I discuss may not be relevant or relatable to others who have not shared similar experiences. Therefore, if I were to encapsulate my primary philosophy, it would be the perpetual pursuit of personal growth and character development. Central to this practice is the care and nurturing of our physical bodies. If we struggle to care for our physical well-being in any aspect, we must pause, take a deep breath, and reflect upon it. Rather than passing judgment or seeking external validation, we should approach ourselves with compassion.

5: Beginning the Transformative Journey: Deep Breathing Exercises

To begin this transformative journey, I highly recommend dedicating time to deep breathing exercises. Start with three minutes today and gradually increase to three sessions of three minutes each day. Find a comfortable position, even lying on your back if necessary, but remain fully conscious. In fact, I believe that with enough focus and undistracted attention, one can practice this type of breathing even while driving on the highway. Personally, during my years of riding motorcycles, I was so apprehensive that my entire focus was on the road and my surroundings. Whenever I found myself getting distracted, I would promptly bring my attention back.

Skydiving as a Metaphor for Life

During my skydiving endeavors, the intensity of the experience often overwhelmed me, making it challenging to maintain complete presence in the moment. While on the airplane climbing to altitude, I would occasionally drift into sleep for those 15 minutes. However, as soon as the door opened, my heart would race at its maximum speed, as the surreal nature of the situation brought life and death into stark focus. My mind would be preoccupied with what was to come, causing me to overlook many details that I now recall vividly. I can recall the visual imagery of the seatbelts bolted to the floor, the ones skydivers would wear during the ascent. When the door opened, the rush of air into the plane would cause the buckles to flap and float as if in zero gravity.

I vividly remember the sheer madness of jumping out and freefalling towards the earth. At times, I would find myself questioning the wisdom of hurtling towards the ground at 160 miles per hour in an upright position. It would leave me breathless, yet I remained steadfast in my determination to survive. Throughout the freefall, I maintained acute awareness of my altitude, a crucial element in skydiving. By 3,500 feet, I would position myself flat on my belly, away from other skydivers, ensuring I had clear airspace to deploy my parachute no lower than 2,500 feet. This altitude might be considered low for some, as I preferred to have more altitude as a safety measure in case of emergencies. Altitude became my ally in skydiving, and time was a valuable asset. These experiences served as powerful metaphors for life itself.

Embracing Life's Precious Moments

I invite you to consider life in the same way I perceive skydiving—as a precious and finite resource. We must approach each day with a sense of purpose, aiming to land safely at its end. We must remain focused, find joy, and continuously improve our ability to navigate the challenges we encounter. Most importantly, we must remain aware of our breath and cultivate the practice of deep, relaxing inhalation.

Thai Boxing and the Art of Catching Your Breath

Following my skydiving years, I delved into the realm of Thai Boxing and eventually stepped into the ring to compete. Thai Boxing, similar to American boxing but with the inclusion of knees, kicks, and elbows, demanded a high level of intensity. To excel in this sport, one must master the art of catching their breath and build stamina and cardiovascular endurance. This perpetual quest involves strengthening the capacity to take long, deep breaths and not succumbing to the distractions caused by carbon dioxide. For I believe that carbon dioxide is the ultimate distractor, whereas oxygen becomes the focal point of our attention.

Embracing the Joy and Focus in Life's Challenges

Stepping onto the stage to fight on a Friday night, in front of a vast audience, the essential first step was to take those long, deep breaths. Without doing so, the adrenaline coursing through our veins would deplete our energy, and the heightened anxiety could freeze us, hindering our trained responses. Staying relaxed and composed was crucial to executing the techniques we had honed during the intensive eight-week training period. There comes a moment in the fifth round, around a minute in, when the realization dawns upon you: you will not tire, and victory is within reach. In that moment, you embrace the joy of the fight, understanding that it is a fleeting experience. You choose to savor it, not only for yourself but also for the entertainment of those who have invested their presence in the event. Fear dissipates, and you immerse yourself in the challenge, all while maintaining a focus on your breath.

Confronting Obstacles and Seeking Liberation

These examples may seem extreme, but they serve as powerful metaphors for the moments we encounter in life. We all face situations that evoke similar emotions and demands. It is imperative that we approach ourselves and others with compassion, avoiding unnecessary risks while wholeheartedly embracing opportunities for growth. When faced with our fears, it is essential to articulate them through writing, to ponder their significance, and to determine whether they serve us or hinder our progress. By doing so, we demonstrate our willingness to confront these obstacles. Yet, even with willingness, fear may persist, and our strength may falter. In such instances, we turn to prayer and meditation, seeking guidance and inner fortitude. This cyclical process of returning to willingness, praying, and meditating becomes our path to liberation.

Cherishing the Breath and Embracing the Journey

In essence, dear reader, let us cherish the breath that sustains us, the breath that connects us to the present moment and anchors us in the journey of self-discovery. May we nurture our bodies, commit to personal growth, and approach each day as a skydive, understanding that time and altitude are limited. With unwavering focus, appreciation, and deep breathing, let us land safely, having savored every exhilarating and transformative moment along the way.

The Transformative Power of Breath in Thai Boxing

Stepping back to my experiences in Thai Boxing, we realize the transformative power of breath. By catching our breath and focusing on oxygen intake, we enhance our ability to perform and overcome challenges. Through deep breaths, we stay grounded and maintain composure, allowing us to excel in the ring.

Finding Joy in the Fight and Embracing the Moment

As we step onto the stage to fight, the importance of deep breathing becomes evident. It helps us manage adrenaline, stay relaxed, and execute our training. In those moments of intense challenge, we embrace the joy of the fight, staying focused on our breath and savoring the experience while it lasts.

Compassion and Growth: Confronting Fear

Approaching ourselves and others with compassion is crucial as we navigate obstacles. By articulating our fears and seeking growth, we demonstrate a willingness to confront challenges. Even in moments of fear and doubt, we turn to prayer, meditation, and inner strength to find liberation.

The Journey of Self-Discovery and Breath

Ultimately, let us cherish the breath that connects us to the present moment and propels our journey of self-discovery. Nurturing our bodies, committing to growth, and embracing each day as a skydive allows us to land safely, having savored every transformative moment along the way. Deep breathing becomes our ally, providing us with strength, focus, and appreciation for the precious resource of life.

Photo attributed to: Macrovector_Official / Freepik

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