When using a holistic approach to addiction recovery, several components are involved to help individual restore their mind, body, and spirit. Holistic treatment often combines medication and holistic practices such as meditation and mindfulness, yoga, acupuncture, massage therapy and more to create a beautiful, well-rounded program for individuals to thrive in. Breathwork is an excellent way to process deep emotions, achieve clarity, and develop a stronger connection with your body.
Breathwork is considered an active meditation – breathing techniques are utilized to help clients achieve calmness and stability. Natural breathing patterns are based on the body’s natural rhythm, which can reduce stress, clear the mind, increase awareness on the present moment, and provide physical and psychological insights when focused on. Breathwork doesn’t just have one approach, however; there are multiple types of breathwork that can be done. The following are some examples:
- Relaxing – place one hand on your chest and the other on your abdomen. Take a deep breath in through your nose, and as you slowly exhale to the count of 4, take note of your chest and abdomen rising and falling. Repeat this slow process of breathing in and out, focusing your attention on the present moment.
- Energizing – do the same as above, but this time breathe in 8-10 very short breaths, quickly exhaling.
A 2014 study conducted by a researcher from Spain sought to explore the benefits of breathwork on 29 participants aged 18-35 years old; results from the study indicated that breathwork affected participants up to a year afterwards, with many having reported experiencing substantial personal meaning and spiritual significance, personal well-being, and life satisfaction. While this may seem simple, many people have stressed the benefits that meditation and breathwork can provide – even major public figures like Oprah have attested to breathwork to achieve new insights on life.
Patricia Gerbarg, M.D., told Shape Magazine, “The input from the respiratory system send the most important messages the brain receives”.
Since our breath is what brings us life, what better way to honor our life and our bodies by focusing on it? If you haven’t already, speak with a professional from a reputable treatment center about breathwork and how you can incorporate this into your treatment program.
Tree House Recovery is a men’s treatment program located in Portland, Oregon. Creating sustainable recovery through sustainable change, our programs help men learn how to live sober with adventurous lives. Call us today for information: (503) 850-2474