What to do When You Feel Like Giving Up (Part 2): "Don't Forget to Breathe" - RV Business Coach
August 27, 2014

What to do When You Feel Like Giving Up (Part 2): “Don’t Forget to Breathe”

Last week, I wrote about making a decision to move forward, even if it feels like you need a miracle. While miracles do happen, it’s probably wise not to solely depend on one. So in the next few weeks, I’ll be writing about things you can do to move towards your decision.

One of the first proactive steps you can take is remembering to breathe. Many people (myself included) have a tendency to stop breathing when faced with a challenging situation. However, breathing will help you center and ground yourself and dispel tension.

I experienced this first hand several years ago when we visited Disney World. My older son is a thrill seeker, and he wanted to ride every roller coaster. Now, I’ve never been a big roller coaster fan, but I rode so that he could. And as we did, I discovered that they were much more fun if I relaxed and breathed, rather than tensing up and holding my breath.

This phenomenon is nothing new. Fritz Perls, MD, is credited with saying, “Anxiety is excitement without breathing.” And Gay Hendricks wrote in The Big Leap:

“The very same mechanisms that produce excitement also produce fear, and any fear can be transformed into excitement by breathing fully with it. On the other hand, excitement turns into fear quickly if you hold your breath. When scared, most of us have a tendency to try to get rid of the feeling. We think we can get rid of it by denying or ignoring it, and we use holding our breath as a physical tool of denial.”
 (Hendricks, Gay (2009-04-10). The Big Leap: Conquer Your Hidden Fear and Take Life to the Next Level (p. 18). HarperOne. Kindle Edition).

I’ve also learned this lesson in my Martial Arts training. In sparring,  forms, breaking, and other activities, we are taught to breathe. Breathing helps us stay relaxed and remained focused.

This film clip from The Forbidden Kingdom sums it up nicely:

In this clip, Jason Tripitikas (Michael Angarano) is working himself into a panic as he considers his situation. Silent Monk (Jet Li) just continues to meditate, remaining quiet, until finally turning to deliver this important message: “Don’t forget to breathe.”

So, when faced with a challenge, breathe. Are you facing a challenge now? If so, please share below. And breathe. 🙂

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