Even though I’ve been meditating daily for about two years now, I noticed recently that, at other times during the day, I was restricting, almost unconsciously, my belly from expanding. I was holding it back it.
I say almost unconsciously because true, unconscious breathing follows the correct pattern.
It’s only years of conditioning that overtakes what’s natural. Holding your belly in is (in my opinion) a deeply ingrained habit.
Why would I do this? Well, speaking as a man, I know that when I’m around other men, there’s a natural desire to tighten up my belly. This display shows strength. A ‘weak’, flabby stomach area looks soft.
Add to that the tens of thousands of images of ‘rock hard abs’ that you’ve been shown.
The truth of the matter is, that’s all bullsh*t. We’re not in the jungle.
It’s time to start recognizing the difference between what you really feel, what someone else told you to feel, and what you don’t need to hold onto anymore.
When you breathe incorrectly, it’s not very good for you. It means that you’re not relaxed.
Being stressed all the time, as in a constant, low-level type of stress, causes a whole host of other problems.
So, breathe, deeply, please. Start with just a few times a day.
You’ll see, over time, simple awareness of what’s going on with your breathing will lead to big changes in your stress level.