LEVEL 1: The In-Out Exercise
The In-Out exercise is a simple practice of inhaling to a count of four, exhaling to an equal count of four, and then repeating the cycle without pausing. It is extremely important that our breathing follows a steady rhythm and tempo; we should always maintain the same count as we inhale and as we exhale.
Complete the following five-minute meditation exercise:
- Inhale from your nose as you mentally count to four.
- Exhale from your nose as you mentally count to four.
- Repeat the cycle until you reach the five-minute objective.
Once you become comfortable completing this five-minute exercise, you can proceed with the next level (2).
Tips for This Exercise and Following Exercises:
- If you are having any difficulties breathing solely from your nose, you may also breathe with your mouth.
- As we inhale, we must first lower our diaphragm and expand our stomach until it is filled with air, we can then slowly expand our chest as we fill our lungs with air.
- As we exhale, we must raise our diaphragm and suck our stomach in as we release the air from our lungs and stomach.
- Having a metronome or a clock nearby with a tick loud enough to hear, but not too loud that it becomes distracting, is a great way of maintaining your focus and keeping a steady tempo.
- Holding the Jnana Mudra will have an uplifting effect on the mind and body (joining the tips of our thumbs and index fingers, forming a circle, with the back of our hands resting on the top of our knees/thighs and our palms facing up).
- Document your sessions, and always pay attention to breakthroughs and synchronicities as there are no such things as coincidences. You should also document your dreams or any lingering thought or idea as you wake up. We only have ten to fifteen seconds to write down our thoughts as soon as we wake up before our mind interferes and imposes rationality and logic.