Create certainty to create calm
Today on Hop into Health I interviewed Nam and Devo – two friends and two inspiring people. I wanted to explore the importance of breathing, why it is essential for happiness and stress management and more importantly HOW TO BREATHE??
Crazy to suggest that you don’t know how to breathe I know, but as you sit here reading this, are you aware of your breathe?
Are you able to use your breathe to stop stress, modulate emotions and govern your thoughts? This is the extent and capabilities of learning to breathe properly.
Q: N & D: What are your back grounds?
A: Nam – Deep sea free diver who helped other free divers. I started to study what happened to people emotionally and chemically in oxygen debt and strategies they used to improve it. We started working with Pat Rafter (iconic Australian tennis star) a few years back to help him optimise his breathing. Then we started attracting serious surfers who were taking on big waves and started to teaching them to breathe, not to panic and control their physical and mental self under stress. From this we realised that we could replicate this to the wider community because what we teach is a daily life skill.
Devon: I did a bachelor in human movement and have been coaching people about their bodies for years. Together we make a great team as I help Nam with the physical and science understandings of what we do.
Q: Why do you think people are struggling to breathe properly?
A: People are missing out on basic life skills in school and as children. We are not taught to breathe from birth through to death. However having control over your breathing enables you to govern your thoughts, your chemistry and your physical self.
Stress in itself (the Fight or flight response AKA sympathetic nervous system response) is often governed by perception and beliefs. If we can work out why and when we are stressing we can learn to switch it off with breathing!
Q: Why is stress increasing?
A: Stress is perception and it is perceived in the body 3 different ways: mental, physical and chemical. When we start to stress our heart rate goes up which affects our higher centres in our brain. Interestingly the mere fact our heart rate goes up, tells our brain to start stressing! The heart feeds back 90% of emotional information to the brain and can generate a stress response, not the other way around!
This recent understanding of the body is what is behind heart math. (A subject for another show)!
Learning to breath better helps manage stress feedback to the brain, slower respiratory rate which keeps chemical changes to a minimum as well keeping the heart calm! So important.
Q: How can people better manage stress?
1. Label it – what is it exactly that is stressing you
2. Create certainty in your body (best done by mastering your breathing slow breathe in and slow breathe out).
3. This delivers more oxygen to the cells which is calming
Q: where can people tap and learn more from you guys?
A: Via our website www.equalize.com.au .
I can highly recommend Nam and Devo for anyone suffering with anxiety or for people wanting to improve their oxygen reserves. Contact them via their website. They would love to hear from you.
There is so much to the stress reaction and most of it is in our control. If you are struggling with anxiety, you really need to start by improving your breathing. Nam took us through a breathing exercise on air (listen the podcast for it) and I strongly recommend doing more with Nam and Devo or getting a guided meditation app or DVD. I am planning on making one over the next few weeks so will let everyone know.