A peaceful state
First, sit straight up, placing one hand on the stomach, and one hand on the chest. With both hands still in place, inhale deeply through the nose. The hand on the stomach should rise with the full breath, but the hand on the chest should not.
Now steadily exhale through the mouth. The hand on the stomach should fall once again, and the hand on the chest should remain still.
Take a few moments now to get used to this deep breathing technique, as it may not come naturally to everyone. Practice this breathing pattern often and it will begin to feel natural.
Remain comfortable. Close your eyes and let them relax.
Release any particular pressure to breathe slowly or quickly.
Become aware of the fact that you are alive. Be aware of yourself. Breathe deeply and exhale slowly. Relax any part of your body where you notice tension or stress by sharpening your focus on that particular area. Continue your deep, steady breathing. Picture that tension as a black cloud leaving your body with every breath you exhale.
Breathe in again…
…and out with long exhalations.
Each time you become aware of yourself, relax your body and return your awareness to your breath.
Take note of each sensation and how the mind responds to enjoyable or difficult feelings. Observe the way the mind attempts to hold on to the pleasant while pushing away something less enjoyable.
Sometimes stressful feelings become unavoidable. In these moments the brain releases chemicals that produce pain and uneasiness. However, you needn’t let your mind dwell in this reaction.
In these moments, if the mind feels the beginnings of stress, don’t focus on reactions. Instead, see what happens when you simply remain aware, always returning your attention to your deep and steady breath.
Well-being lies not in the reaction to thoughts and emotions, but rather in those moments of mindfulness you allow in between them.