I was at my local gym recently, putting in my time on one of the machines meant to enhance my well-being, and I happened to be watching the Dr. Oz Show.  Dr. Oz had a guest who was speaking about a very popular topic: stress.  The two doctors reminded the viewer how hard stress is on the body, and discussed methods for combating it.  They endorsed all the things we know to be good for us: getting enough sleep, eating right, exercising (like I happened to be doing at the time, I smiled to myself!), and the importance of taking adequate moments to focus on one’s breathing. The practice of deep, slow breathing as a way to relax and combat stress was suggested. There were three steps, all to the count of seven.

So I tried it:  Take a deep breath to the slow count of 7; hold the breath for the slow count of 7;  and then exhale to the slow count of 7.

Note to self, and a helpful hint to the reader — one cannot adequately take a deep, “Triple 7” cleansing breath while operating an elliptical machine.  I did try it again later when I was standing still and had the time… or rather took the time to “breathe.”  It was nice — relaxing, even!

After having a good laugh at myself, I realized I needed to think about this.  Multitasking is my mode of operation most of the time.  I stop and give my complete focus and attention to others but am less likely to do the same for myself… and I know I am not alone in this habit.

So I’d like to suggest that you try taking a “Triple 7 Breath” (but preferably not while frenetically marching your way through 45 minutes on an elliptical machine).   I hope it makes a difference!  Ready?  Deep breath…..