Breathing is so simple and automatic, we really don’t tend to give it the respect and attention it deserves. Stopping to notice our breath can be really profound and give us great information. I notice when I get in the mode of “gotta get this done,” I will really restrict my breathing. Simple awareness shifts this immediately. Try it. Just notice your breath right now. Did your breathing get deeper instantly, just from noticing? Sometimes a more detailed focus helps me relax more—on the in-breath, then the out-breath… Other times, a conscious, but gentle effort to expand and lengthen the breath creates more change. All these approaches help at different times. It sounds too easy but it really works!
Bringing breath awareness into massage is a natural fit. As a receiver, you can periodically take notice of how your breathing relates to your tension areas or your thoughts and feelings, if you wish. I don’t usually talk much when I am massaging clients, but I may occasionally direct your attention to your breath—in a quiet, easy and gentle way.