Create a pause. Breathing is an autonomic function controlled by the brainstem. But when something happens in the outside world that threatens you, it can be an emotional or physical threat, it is detected by the area of the brain called the amygdala. The amygdala can decide to send a message using the fast path neural transmission to the brainstem to react or it can direct the message to the prefrontal cortex area of the brain to be more rational and thoughtful about making a decision. In that amygdala moment, you can make a decision. If you can realize what is happening at that moment, you can make a decision to breathe.
At that moment, breathing becomes conscious, and you have successfully Hijacked your Amygdala. Once you made a choice to breathe, to pause. You made a choice not to react, and at that moment you became practiced mindfulness. Understand, your autonomic nervous system is doing what it is designed to do, to protect you! AND you have a choice to PAUSE to change your body’s response to stress by controlling your breath, then you can control your thoughts, decisions, and behavior because you took control of the area of your brain called the Amygdala.
The breath will bring you to the present moment. Allowing your breath to guide you, being vulnerable will give you an opportunity to observe your perceptions, sensations, feelings, thoughts, and emotions to enhance your ability to evolve, develop confidence and resilience.