Try these easy yoga breathing practices to quiet your mind, calm your body and connect with your intuition.
I am a 500-hour qualified yoga teacher and have been teaching gentle hatha yoga since 2006. Yoga breathing, known as pranayama, has always been a wonderful discovery for my yoga students both young and old, as it is often easier than meditation and creates a calm feeling.
Why practice yoga breathing?
BALANCE YOUR ENERGY BODY
Pranayama is a sanskrit word meaning control of the breath and the prana, ie the energy, it contains. When followed correctly, pranayama practices can move the energy around your body and balance it for optimum health.
CALM YOUR MIND
The yoga breathing techniques I share below can calm a busy, stressed or anxious mind. You can do them anywhere, anytime. Children and adults can use these breathing practices.
PREPARE FOR MEDITATION
The yoga breathing techniques offered here are an easy way to slow down your thoughts, so it’s a great way to prepare for your meditation practice. A breathing practice may help you quickly go deep into stillness during meditation.
CONNECT WITH INTUITION
If you’re looking to develop your psychic abilities or intuition, yoga breathing practices can help you quiet and focus your mind to be in a receptive mode. Intuition is all about receiving! Read my blog about meditation for intuition.
EASE ASCENSION SYMPTOMS
Body aches and pains from strong ascension energies such as incoming light codes and solar flares can be eased by the belly breath practice I share below. I particularly recommend this practice when you are receiving personal ascension activations, upgrades or healings from your guides – breathing deeply lets your body relax and accept what is happening. Read my blogs about ascension.
How yoga breathing works
We can easily use the breath to calm our mind and body by taking deep and long breaths. Remember:
Slow, long breaths are calming
Fast, short breaths create anxiety
Our mind can also create a sense of calm or a sense of anxiety through our quality of thinking, that’s why mindfulness meditation is helpful.
Breathing deeply brings more oxygen into the body for healthy functioning. With a deep breath you can get 7 more times oxygen than with a shallow breath!
Most people breathe shallow and it can take some effort to breathe deeply – if this is you, just practice and it will soon become natural.
FOCUS YOUR MIND
Yoga breathing requires you to focus your attention on the breath and not let your mind get distracted by thoughts or external noises. This has the effect of bringing your mind to more stillness or a “quiet” place.
4 basic yoga breathing practices
While you can do pranayama anywhere, a quiet place with a calm atmosphere will help you relax more.
Sit up straight so you can breathe deeply and the lungs can expand fully.
The simplest calming breath is to focus on breathing in deeply and sighing the air out. Try to breathe in through the nose unless you have a blocked nose.
Breathe deeply in through the nose and breath out through the mouth to make a ssssssssssss sound with your tongue.
Humming Bee Breath
Close your eyes, press your thumbs on the flaps of your ears to shut out external noise.
Breathe in deeply through the nose, breath out with a closed mouth and hum like a bee.
Practice for 1-3 minutes. Keep your eyes closed and notice the feeling.
Lie on your back. More comfortable for your back: bend your legs, feet on the floor, knees resting on each other.
Place your hands on your belly. Breathe deeply through your nose into the base of your belly in a slow and measured way – don’t rush this!
As the lungs fill with air the belly naturally rises. As you slowly breath out all the air the belly naturally falls.
Focus your mind on the movement of the breath and the feeling of your hands rising and falling with the belly.
Note: You may like to place one hand on your heart, the other hand on your belly.
Get a peaceful mind and boost your psychic intuitive abilities with kirtan – the joyful yoga practice of chanting mantra with music.
Kirtan is a bhakti yoga practice of chanting sanskrit mantras to music. Mantra means freeing of the mind (man = mind, tra= free) – freeing ourselves from thoughts and fears, allowing ourselves to be our loving pure essence. Kirtan works by occupying the mind, or focusing the mind on mantra, so there is no room for incessant thinking, worries and ruminating thoughts.
Every morning I play kirtan music to relax and still my mind and bring good vibes into my energy field. It is truly beautiful music with mantras that stay in my mind during the day, keeping me focused on loving energy rather than negative thinking. Personally, I have found that the mantras and tunes spontaneously pop into my mind when I’m just about to think too much! I’ve also used kirtan to heal a broken heart, work through grief and find solace in hard times.
What makes kirtan special?
The mantras used in kirtan hold spiritual meaning, and are often devotional to Hindu gods and goddesses such as Ganesha. Westerners may choose to view this practice as a secular one, however I find it opens us up to working with ascended masters of India. The result is usually the same for everyone who tries kirtan – a peaceful mind and joyful feeling in the heart.
Western kirtan music can be of any genre – from rock to jazz to lullabies. The main criteria: it makes the practice appealing to your senses while delivering a meditational experience. As the guru of American kirtan wallah (singer) Krishna Das said, it is easier to take the medicine if it is sweeter.
Kirtan to boost your intuition
As kirtan is good for calming your mind and creating space between thoughts, it helps you to get into the right “frame of mind” to meditate and receive messages from your guides and angels. Of course, like meditation (read my post here), you would need to practice kirtan regularly for it to have this benefit. Why not start a practice of chanting and meditation, then flow into a chat with your guides?
Throat chakra healing
Singing might be the one thing that holds people back from participating in a kirtan. It is not necessary to have a beautiful voice or to be able sing well – the act of singing has an effect on your throat chakra, Visuddha – which relates to self expression, authenticity, speaking your truth, standing up for yourself. Have you ever had a knot in your throat? Was this when you needed to tell someone something but couldn’t? Or perhaps you didn’t have the courage to speak up or show the world your real self? Kirtan can help you clear stuck energy in this chakra and strengthen your ability to communicate your needs and authentically be you.
How do you practice kirtan alone?
You can sing along (but don’t do this while you’re driving!) or listen purely for relaxation. Instead of watching the news or looking at social media when I wake in the morning, I sing along with Krishna Das – he is truly a master of kirtan and I can listen to the same album daily without getting bored. I also play kirtan music while I’m cooking – it puts me in a good mood and hopefully puts good vibes into my dinner!
Attending kirtan events
Going to a live kirtan is a slightly different experience. I first discovered kirtan at a yoga ashram just outside of Sydney. It was a Friday night and a group of yogis were playing beautiful music with instruments including the guitar, Indian drums called the tabla and a portable organ-style keyboard called a harmonium.
A kirtan wallah was leading the audience in call and response chants. As the music built up in energy, the chants became louder and faster, with the audience eventually jumping off the ground into ecstatic dance. As the chant slowed down and the volume lowered, everyone came into stillness and felt the pure Divine energy within. Singing mantras with others led by an experienced kirtan wallah can give you a deep blissful feeling – I like to think of it as cleaning one’s mind and energy body.
Kirtan for kids
Children will find all kinds of kirtan music appealing – it’s great for calming them down, pre-bedtime, anytime! American kirtan wallah Jai Uttal made a special album just for kids, Kirtan Kids.
Famous kirtan singers
I’ve highlighted some of the top kirtan artists of the Western World in this YouTube playlist (also on my YouTube channel). If you find songs that you like, please support the artists by buying their albums or streaming on official channels such as Spotify or Soundcloud, where royalties are paid.
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GROWTH, INTUITION & CONNECTION
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This spiritual circle offers support for those on the ascension path: the newly awakened, spiritual seekers, lightworkers and starseeds, who want to develop their intuitive abilities, connect with angels and receive healing.
I provide the energetic space and activities to help you develop a strong connection with your inner guidance system, which is invaluable in navigating life.
Relaxation & Meditation
– simple meditation that is easy to practice at home
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What’s one thing you can carry with you anywhere that can help you out during times of distress, grief and worry? A well-heeled meditation practice.
Meditation is the act of focusing on something to allow the mind to become more still (notice I didn’t say empty!). One simple way to do this is by placing your awareness on the movement of your breath into and out of your body. The challenge is to keep your focus and not get lost in your thoughts.
If you are human like me, you’ll probably notice you have many thoughts – and some of them are not nice. Don’t be hard on yourself. Meditation is going to help you, and me, be calmer in the body and in the mind.
The key to getting the benefits of meditation is a regular practice, so that when you really need it, when the shit hits the fan, you’ll be able to use it. Think of it like a muscle that gets a workout everyday and gets stronger each time. After some time you’ll go deeper into a meditative state much faster than before.
Start out with shorter sittings then increase the time as it gets easier for you. The best posture is sitting upright, either in a chair or propped on a meditation stool or cushion. Did you know that yoga poses were practiced in India to enable people to sit in meditation longer without pain? I recommend gentle yoga, if you’re interested.
If one of your goals is to have greater access to your intuitive abilities, then meditation is the go-to solution. A disciplined practice will enable you to fine-tune your awareness. It’s also a way to raise your vibration to communicate with spirit in higher frequencies.
Lastly, you don’t need a recorded meditation to follow along. Many “meditations” are available now but they’re actually visualisations – these are great, but think of them as dessert, not dinner. May your meditation practice be a peaceful retreat from the world around you.
My spirit guides often give me messages by putting songs into my mind. I usually will hear a melody or one chorus and try to figure out the song. They are considerate though, and use songs that I’ve heard in my lifetime – some go way back to the 1980s!
So a couple of weeks ago I was walking my dog and I heard in my mind the words “the greatest love of all” along with some of the melody. I knew it was the Whitney Houston song. This is the part of the song they wanted me to take note of:
“Because the greatest
Love of all is happening to me
I found the greatest
Love of all inside of me
The greatest love of all
Is easy to achieve
Learning to love yourself
It is the greatest love of all”
I had been getting the message for myself, and also the collective, that we are needing to work on our own self love. The guidance, particularly, is to be mindful of any self-criticism, such as judgements about your appearance or comparing yourself to others. Do your best to cultivate a more loving and accepting view of yourself.
Each week or so we are being asked by our guides to work on different things in ourselves. This is part of ascension, which can be thought of as an upgrading of the human race and the earth, to a higher vibration. To raise our vibration we must leave behind what is weighing us down – not only our personal emotional debris, but societal conditioning.
The Divine Feminine energy is rising, this means that all people would have a more balanced energetic system of feminine and masculine, and it would be reflected in society.
I highly encourage you to look at your thoughts and beliefs about yourself. It can be challenging but is well worthwhile.