Piedras de Stonehenge y logo de Healthy Corner. Como título, Respiración Cuadrada, sección Healthy Corner, con el Doctor Juan Cuadrado.

Hi! Mi uncle, Jorge, told me once about a conversation he had had. When uncle Jorge told stories, you had to pay attention; he knew about everything and knew really diverse and interesting people.

They had been hunting all day around the mountains of Ancares. Possibly, my father was in the group too. At the end of the day, they had lunch in a house in a remote, small village, hidden between those mountains and forests. One of the areas with the wildest nature in Spain.

In the house lived a family, and among them, the grandfather. A man who was in his nineties, but still took care of the country tasks, such as looking after cows and other animals. He woke up very soon and started doing different tasks at his own rhythm.

The grandfather’s life had been really tough. That area of León was covered with snow during weeks, even months, every year. The civil war, the ‘maquis’ and the posterior repression were tough, violent and fearful stages. Besides, suffering the hunger that human disasters or dry seasons brought.

My uncle asked him how come after all of that, he remained so healthy and young.

The grandfather look at him in the eyes and said: “Look, the key is… not forgetting to breathe”.

Not forgetting to breathe; stopping and breathing. And that’s how it works: in stressful moments, stop and breathe.

We could make an experiment to feel it ourselves. Tighten one of your fists firmly. What happens? Your breath stops. Now please, focus your attention on your breath. Your fist relaxes.

When we are stressed, our body contracts. We can diminish the tension by stopping and focusing our minds on the breath.

If someone knows what really tough situations are, those are the Navy SEAL soldiers, the elite troops of the American army. They use a kind of breathwork called Box Breathing to calm down and focus during tough moments.

1. Inhaling (breathing in) counting to four.

2. Holding the air counting to four.

3. Exhaling (breathing out) counting to four.

4. Holding without air counting to four.

Repeat it to a maximum of 6 times and see how it will help you.

We will keep learning about breathing. It might help us a lot and it’s always there.

Breathe, this is mindfulness!

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