What is Transformational Breath®?
Transformational Breath® is a therapeutic breathwork system, awarded Best Complementary Medicine Organisation by the Institute of Complementary & Natural Medicine. Facilitators like me work on increasing the depth and flow of your breath, which unlocks a whole host of physical, emotional & spiritual benefits. Discover more about how it works here.
What's has breathing got to do with creativity?
In short, EVERYTHING. While we all have the same respiratory 'equipment' (lungs, diaphragm etc) our life and experiences shape the way we breathe, resulting in each of us having a breathing pattern as individual as a fingerprint. Making art or launching a business are both challenging paths. They require you to get in touch with your inner-most thoughts, feelings and ideas, the ones we often keep hidden from ourselves, and to have those parts of you seen by others. Great work inevitably involves several 'failures' too - or stepping stones as I prefer to call them - as you hone your skills and vision.
Transformational Breath® Facilitators like myself see all these struggles and more reflected in your breathing, which we are trained to 'read' using sight, sound and touch. We notice where there is tension, trauma and energetic blockages in your body, then set about guiding your breathing to help you release negative memories and limiting beliefs gently and safely.
"But wait, thoughts and feelings live in the mind, not the body?"
I hear that a lot. But actually, no. It's too simplistic to think of the mind as existing tidily, solely in the brain. It's part of the body, connected in myriad ways to the system at large, so try thinking about your body and mind as having a two-way conversation. The ancients knew this and today's scientists are concur.
Your breath is the connection between your body and the outside world, your connection to life force energy. This is why it's such an accurate mirror to the relationship you have with life itself. Deep full breath = rich expansive life. Hesitant shallow breath = a life ruled by fear and caution. As a creative/entrepreneur, you need to have a courageous and trusting outlook to thrive. You must value yourself and your work highly, even when others don't, or at least value yourself enough to try. In learning how to breathe better you can give all of these gifts to yourself.
Ok, let's get a little more specific...
Here are a some of the ways Transformational Breath® helps support me and my artist/entrepreneur clients...
#1 Breathwork brings me into the PRESENT moment
To get into the rhythm of a Transformational Breath® session my awareness needs to be right here, right now. Not thinking about the time I got up on stage and forgot my lyrics, "word's don't come easily" from Tracy Chapman's hit Baby Can I Hold You (you have to laugh), and not projecting into the future either ("How will my work will be received?", "What do people really think of me?)
In the present moment, yesterday and tomorrow take their proper place in the lineup of thoughts and beliefs that are actually true today. Fears are replaced with perspective and clear-sight, and the tasks on my to-do list feel ten times more do-able. One helpful tip is to combine the Transformational Breathing technique with acupressure over the solar plexus. This helps retrain the muscles here to relax and 'let go' of energetic blockages (aka fear) which can easily become trapped here. If you're not sure how to do the Transformational Breath® basic breathing technique get my free instructions here.
#2 Breathwork tunes me into what's INSIDE
...and I'm always surprised by what I discover. Sometimes when I breathe memories surface, appearing like clips of films in my mind's eye. Sometimes these clips are not 'memories' at all, but scenes from somewhere else entirely: my imagination, my unconscious, past lives? No one knows for sure. What I do know, is that these visuals make great ingredients for songs and poems, just as dreams often do. Breathwork gives you fodder to explore and transmute into art, kick-starting the creative process by presenting to you fresh themes and imagery to try to capture on the canvas or the page.
Breathwork also puts you in touch with the deeper, more knowing part of yourself. The voice in your head that has precisely the wisdom you need to be able to pivot, change direction and move forward in your creative pursuits or business venture. We're all familiar with cloudy, racing thoughts. The ones that go nowhere other than round and round. Breathwork is the antidote, the solution literally right under your nose.
#3 Breathwork GROUNDS me so I can get shit done
It's not enough to be with brimming with ideas. You need to be practical and organised to turn blue-sky thinking into reality. Learning to breathe into your belly and lower abdomen is great for this. Sadly only a minority of people in the West are able to breathe this way, having never been educated in the importance of good breath heath. An important focus in a Transformational Breath® session is restoring the deep & diaphragmatic breath that is in fact natural to us all. As breathing in this way becomes more habitual, those who previously had their head in the clouds start to come back down to earth.
When Transformational Breath® is paired with personal coaching, it is possible to set goals, create roadmaps and strategies - and stick to them. Lots of people like having a coach "to hold them accountable". However, one of the beautiful things about breathwork is that it helps you cultivate SELF discipline. It's great to have a guide, especially when you feel like you've hit a speed bump in your career, but the best guides nurture your SELF confidence and teach you how to steer your ship solo.
#4 Breathwork makes me realise I AM creativity
Transformational Breath® helps you make the mental shift from 'I am being creative' to 'I am creativity'. Every action we take is a creative manifestation of what started out as nothing more than a thought, feeling or impulse. From making the dinner to recording an album of tunes. It's our nature - not just to exist - but to play, express, make and build. If you're worried you're not creative enough, that's a block not a fact. To move through it, hold your fingers just above the pubic arch, then press down firmly. Always into skin/muscle, never bone. Breathe in the Transformational Breath® style, visualising oxygen clearing and cleansing the energy in your lower abdomen. Try saying the following affirmations out loud:
Left side, above pubic arch: "I receive my creative expression" / "I let in my creative expression"
Right side: "I am perfect creativity expressing" / "I am pure creativity expressing"
It's interesting to note that these same points can be used to connect more deeply to your sexuality:
Left side, above pubic arch: "I am safe to receive sexually"
Right side: "I am safe to express my sexuality"
Creativity and sexuality are two sides of the same coin. Both result in the manifestation of something that existed only as potential before, the conversion of life force energy into something tangible, whether that's a novel or a newborn child. When you're actively trying to move through creative blocks, it's helpful to remind yourself that you are in essence 'a creation', and to view 'creativity' as a way of being encoded in your DNA.
To book Transformational Breath® or Transformational Breath® with Coaching select an appointment that suits you at: https://www.hayleycannon.com/appointments
Hayley Cannon is an online Transformational Breath® Facilitator, writer and musician. Following the release of her debut album Who Are You? she was named "One to watch" by The Guardian and introduced by Tom Robinson as a BBCIntroducing artist on 6Music. Today she shares her passion for breathwork and personal transformation, working with a range of clients including singers, performers, visual artists, entrepreneurs & leaders in creativity and conscious business.
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