‘Drawing your Breath’ can be done any time when there is too much going on our head and we want to calm down and relax. I use this activity myself and have also found it very effective in my individual and group Art Therapy sessions. It is very difficult to control stressful triggers or situations, but what we can manage is how we strengthen our distress tolerance.
The simplicity of the activity makes it doable by everybody anytime. All you need is a pen or pencil or color markers (if available), a piece of paper and space to sit down and do it.
Place your paper and marker in front of you. Sit in a comfortable position.
Start by closing your eyes and focusing on your breath.
Visualize your breath as a line and start drawing it on paper. Let your breath lead your hands.
Observe the rhythm in your breath. It may be smooth or accelerated; deep or shallow.
Observe the sensations in your body.
Observe your feelings, you may sense anxiety, fear, or joy. These are normal. Bring your attention slowly back to your breath.
Try taking few deep breaths.
After few minutes, you can switch hands and continue drawing your breath.
You may even try drawing with both hands simultaneously.
Draw as long as you need to. Slowly open your eyes and observe the drawing.
This is a simple practice which can be incorporated in our daily routine. It is a great tool to practice mindfulness and bring in some intentional moments of clam in our otherwise hectic lifestyle.