For 15 years I have experienced terrible anxiety, worry, nervousness, and internal stress. I tried everything to get rid of it, even anti-depressive medication and mindfulness. Then I read your book The Power of Your Breath, and started to follow your advice and examples, and breathe through my nose. The anxiety, internal stress, worry and nervousness all vanished, as if they had never existed.
It had never crossed my mind that breathing could have such a profound effect on my mental well-being. Mindfulness doesn’t work without breathing properly.
Life has become easy and struggle-free
When I used to breathe through my mouth, I had constant sniffles and colds. Since I began to breathe through my nose, I no longer have a runny nose. Before I had a runny nose countless of times each day. I also have much more energy.
My life is now full of joy and I have an inner calm. It is so wonderful to live without anxiety. My body and mind have finally started to relax. I no longer live up in my head. The stomach problems that I used to have are also gone.
I’m not worrying anymore. Life has become easy and struggle-free. I am more present in the moment, and the more properly I breathe, the freer I feel. It’s almost as I can’t grasp what has happened. I see the world differently now. It’s like it’s somehow more peaceful.
Since breathing properly I feel less stress at work and am more efficient
Before, I always felt hugely stressed at work, but proper breathing has changed that. There’s still a lot to do, of course, and the schedule is tight, but I am much more relaxed and finish my tasks much sooner than before when I was stressed out and felt that I worked my ass off.
At the end of your book, you write about your inner journey and I basically feel the same change that you have felt. Now that I have improved my breathing habits, I understand what the Buddha and other wise men were referring to when they talked about having been set free.
The key was to learn how to breathe through my nose properly
Looking back, I can see how I was always struggling to breathe through my nose properly. One reason for this was that even though my mouth was shut, my tongue ended up in the middle of my mouth rather than in the roof of the mouth. This made it very difficult to inhale properly through my nose.
Basically, I could not walk and breathe at the same time but instead had to sit down to make nasal breathing work. It made me dizzy to not be able to breathe low into my stomach, which annoyed me. At work I’d often get terrible dizzy. At some point you get angry.
I struggled to make the Breathing Retraining work at first, then I woke up one morning and noticed how, without thinking about it, I was breathing through my nose without any problem whatsoever. My body had solved the problem by itself.
My mouth was almost closed, since I have an over bite I can’t close it completely, and my tongue was resting against my palate, behind the front teeth, just as you say it should do.