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Set Free

Updated: Nov 21, 2021

Of course, we all know that breathing can relax us, slow us down, center us. Yoga calls breath Pranayama. If you look closely at this word, you find that it ends with “ayama". Now this is something I truly love, because it means “to be set free”.

Taking a moment to breathe doesn’t just calm us down, it literally sets us free. We are freed of our first reaction. We are freed of our quick over-reaction. We are freed of that hurtful reaction that popped up. (Which may have been directed at someone or perhaps directed at ourself.) It gives us a moment to step back and choose, instead of our reaction choosing for us.

I wonder if making an intention helps? Beginning our day by choosing one type of interaction in which to intentionally breathe. Maybe even closing our eyes and envisioning breathing in that moment and feeling the freedom from it.

See why I love this idea of breath setting us free? And it’s really more than just an idea. It’s literally built right into the word itself: pranayama.

I think I’m going to close my eyes right now, and make my breath intention for today.

Until next time,


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