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What Is Breathwork And How I Use It With My Clients To...

Written by: Erin Reiland, Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.

 

Recently Breathwork has become more mainstream and I have heard it thrown around in many different ways. Breathwork is an ancient modality that has been used for centuries! Better known in eastern medicine, people have sought spiritual awakening, self-healing, and meditative relaxation through breathing techniques.

I am also a Breathwork Practitioner, using breath to heal past trauma, negative emotions and pain stuck within the body


Breathwork is essentially using your breath to be able to tune into your body and release old beliefs, habits and energy that are literally “stuck” inside of you. Your body holds onto so many things that do not serve your highest good and allow you to step into that place of alignment and creating the life you want. The body is much wiser than our minds and keeps track of all of our experiences in life. When situations and things are held, kept in, or repressed from our minds, that doesn’t mean these things are not still there. One way to release these things and move through, not around them is by using your breath. It is not meditation or mindfulness. These practices are all very different.


Once I began to practice and integrate breathwork into my daily life, I was amazed by just how much “stuff” I was able to work through and release through my breath. It also is a practice that can take only minutes to do. To be able to go from that parasympathetic part of the nervous system that is more in the anxiety/high alert state; Then to move your body into the sympathetic state of “rest/digest”. Where the body literally has physiological changes through use of your breath. (Studies have been done to prove this and more continue to come out about the benefits of breathwork).


It’s the fastest way to ground yourself and connect to your body and the present moment.


We’ve been conditioned to avoid pain in our society. It is easier to not feel, but when you avoid pain you cannot truly heal those underlying issues that are hurting you in the first place. So many times that is why people turn to addictions like eating disorders, alcohol etc. to numb, feel better for a moment or an avoidance protector. To have moments of respite, only to then have it be a fleeting feeling and then right back to the pain. But, by using your breath and feeling into those places of pain or fear, you can release it and connect back to yourself.


It means you cannot change your outcomes without first changing yourself. The practice of breath control and awareness, or Breathwork, is the fastest and most accessible tool available for becoming more aware of the body, emotions, and subconscious thoughts. Breathwork leads to more kindness, greater creativity, higher emotional intelligence, better health, lower stress, deeper emotional intelligence, better health, lower stress, deeper spirituality, broader self-awareness and higher consciousness.


What Is The Difference Between Various Breathwork Practices?


The difference between other breathwork practices and what PAUSE Breathwork uses is, PAUSE is about healing and transformation, rather than sessions around relaxation only. With PAUSE Breathwork the after effect is relaxation.


Breathwork can help you unclog the emotionality and trauma that has blocked you from real healing and transformation for so long. There are many benefits when it comes to breathwork, here are a few listed by PAUSE Breathwork:

  • Immediate stress reduction and anxiety relief.

  • Aids in connecting you with your emotions and changes your response to them.

  • Revitalizes your organs.

  • Gives you access to your higher power.

  • Reduces toxins in your body and provides an energetic release.

  • Provides more energy and mental clarity.

  • Deepens your relationship to your body.

  • Releases trauma that has been stuck in your system for years.

  • Allows you to address your emotionality in the moment.

  • Easier access to your intuition-that gut feeling you get.

Another question I get is what is the difference between “holotropic Breathwork” and the breathwork practices I use:


The thing with holotropic breathwork is they are cuing, and really pressuring you to go quickly (with a quite activating pattern) for a long time.


Now under the lens of trauma… that’s not necessarily the best option for all people.


So if you’re someone who is newly exploring breathwork, my philosophy of it is – it doesn’t have to be intense and long for it to be deeply transformational.


Integrative breathwork involves a lot of slower patterns that are less activating. They’re shorter, and they don’t take you out of your conscious state.


Which is completely opposite from holotropic breathwork, where you dive deep and you go deep really quickly. Which can be super powerful and beneficial for some people… but not everybody.


So if you’re someone who is newly exploring breathwork, my philosophy of it is – it doesn’t have to be intense and long for it to be deeply transformational.


Integrative breathwork involves a lot of slower patterns that are less activating. They’re shorter, and they don’t take you out of your conscious state.


Which is completely opposite from holotropic breathwork, where you dive deep and you go deep really quickly. Which can be super powerful and beneficial for some people… but not everybody.


Remember, breathwork is not a one size fits all approach.


Breathwork is actually one of the most powerful healing tools for people who have trauma.


But the path of healing needs to be really mindful.


We can’t go into an all-out meditative, deep session with someone who has a lot of unresolved trauma.


Another misconception about breathwork that I really want to address is this, breathwork does not have to be super activating and energizing in order to be deeply transformational.

So this is HUGE for people who’ve been numbed out, or living in a relatively disconnected state for their whole life.

Because when you go from completely numbed out, to dumping a bunch of energy into your system, it could end up feeling really uncomfortable for that person…


And then they’ll be like, oh my God, I NEVER want to do Breathwork again!


I know that for a fact, because I get tons of DMs on Instagram saying that exact thing. With people saying they tried breathwork and hated it.

And my response is always, always, always… well yeah, because you’ve got to start slow.


You need to slowly open up that window of tolerance or else it’s going to feel like too much too soon.


Anytime you take a breathwork class, know that your wisdom and your body’s intelligence always wins over the cue of the facilitator.


There’s many elements that go into play in any given track.


Versus holotropic, which is breathing as hard as you can, hoping for the best, and seeing what happens.

Which again, I really want to empathize that that approach is not wrong. It’s just different. And it doesn’t work for everybody.

Remember, at the end of the day your breathwork practice is all about you, your preference, and your journey.


Difference No.1 At Pause, we have two categories of breathwork – integrative and meditative. Holotropic is all about going hard and fast, no matter what your goals are.


Difference No.2 We believe in slowly acclimating the body to the intensity of breathwork, and teach techniques that are powerfully healing (no matter the intensity).


Difference No.3 Each Pause Breathwork journey is all about tailored for specific goals and end results. The holotropic breathwork technique is a one-size-fits all approach.


My recommendation is to try both and then decide what’s best for you.


The way I use Breathwork is in 2 different formats:


30-minute Integrative Sessions:


This 30-minute Breathwork session is designed to hold space for relaxation.

Techniques designed to help integrate into everyday moments. When we need a breather, or to regulate the nervous system so we can clear stagnant and potent negative energy from within our body.


60-minute MEDITATIVE Sessions:


This 60-minute Breathwork session is designed to hold space for transformation.

Meditative experiences are used to experience a "journey" as we go deeper within our bodies and unearth stuck, emotional blockages. The purpose is to clear energy that no longer serves us; that may be emotions and past experiences that have been stuck within us for most of our lives. To be able to achieve overall emotional, spiritual, and physical wellness.


By utilizing corresponding breath patterns to release stuck energy, we allow ourselves to emotionally come back to a place of balance and peace within our bodies and system.


Within each of us we have everything we need to heal. Knowing that the body is the healer and through the power of breath each of us can access this state of calm, peace, happiness and healing.


Here is a link to an article published about my work with Breathwork:


Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and visit my website for more info!

 

Erin Reiland, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine

Erin Reiland is a Certified Disordered Eating/Anxiety, Breathwork and NLP Trauma Coach. She helps women overcome their struggles with food, its underlying causes and begin to live a purposeful life with lasting recovery.


She is the creator of InBody_Love Coaching, where she supports and guides women to heal their past trauma, anxiety and disordered eating. Erin had a battle for over 20 years with a severe eating disorder and experiencing early childhood trauma. Since recovering, she has made it her mission to help others with their mental health.


She is a Certified Breathwork Practitioner, using breath to heal past trauma, negative emotions and pain stuck within the body.


In the last 3 years, she has been featured in major media outlets such as CBS, ABC, NBC and FOX. She was a contributing consultant for a TEDx talk about eating disorders in 2019, with over 100k views. She has been a guest on multiple podcasts, interviews and speaking engagements on topics surrounding mental health and eating disorders.


She is also certified in DBT, CBT and Mindfulness Coaching. She is an Ambassador for "Project Heal", the Nations largest nonprofit providing grants to those who cannot afford eating disorder treatment. She has over 12k Instagram (@erin_reiland_love) and Twitter (@food_Body_Coach) Followers.


Her mission is "HOPE".....Help One Person Everyday.

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