I love practicing skills that begin with deep breathing with my clients. This post was actually prompted by an exercise done with my supervises recently - after processing through one of my counselors feelings of frustration with a client's lack of progress. (obvious this was discussed further focusing on a more person centered model of individualized successes - but that's not what this post is about) It can happen so quickly, getting swept up in another person's chaos and not realizing now you're just along for the ride. My encouragement - just breathe.
Breathe and Observe. When we observe, we're sensing an experience as just an experience. You’re just noticing – noticing a thought, noticing a feeling, noticing sounds and other sensations. Noticing urges; urges to act, move, speak etc. Observe and do what? Nothing. You’re just noticing. Like you’re observing sail boats moving by you, skimming on top of the water. You’re not pushing feelings or thoughts away, or trying to change them - You’re not attaching yourself to what your observing. You’re just observing. you’re just sitting and being with your observation. No judgement (this sucks, this is uncomfortable, this is unfair, this is cold, this is sticky - these are judgments)
Let’s try an exercise in observing.
Place your feet on the floor – observe your feet on the floor.
Observe your bottom in the chair (or observe how you are sitting or laying)
Observe the first 3 thoughts that go through your mind
Observe the sounds in the room
Observe your breath, in and out