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Time to Take a Breather: Lifestyle Practice

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The next Whole Life Challenge starts in:

Take a Breather Three Times Each Day This Week

Simple Instructions:

  1. Each day find three opportunities to take a breather — stop what you are doing, push back from it, and take five to ten deep, slow breaths.
  2. You can choose any three moments you like, but you must do them all at separate times.
  3. Some suggestions: When you leave for work; when you finish work; when you get home; before or after a challenging meeting, conversation, or phone call; or even any time you step outside.
  4. You can stay sitting at your desk, but you can also stand up and go outside if you like.

Watch this video for an explanation of this Lifestyle Practice from Whole Life Challenge co-founders Andy Petranek and Michael Stanwyck.

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Why Is This Practice Important?

If you’re not paying attention, life can take on an unyielding pace without your consent. There is a good reason they call life a rat race — it can be fast and chaotic. Getting swept up in a routine of one-thing-after-another is an easy thing to have happen. It’s even easier to forget that anything outside of your to-do list exists.

Between family, work, projects, appointments, cellphones, and social media, it seems we hardly have any time to come up for air. And we need air — space to be calm, relax, and focus inward. Space to breathe. Without it, we get all wound up without ever getting any wind down.

Even a simple, intentional moment of disconnecting from everything outside, to reconnect with what’s inside, can be a powerful practice. You may be reminded that you belong in that list of people, places, and things that need taking care of, and begin to experience yourself in ways you’ve forgotten about. In that moment of quiet, you might be reminded why you say you’re here.

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Michael Stanwyck
Michael Stanwyck is the co-founder of The Whole Life Challenge, an idea that developed during his seven years as a coach and gym manager at CrossFit Los Angeles.

He graduated from UCLA with a BA in philosophy as well as a degree from the Southern California School of Culinary Arts, and feels food is one of the most important parts of a life - it can nourish, heal, and bring people together.

Michael believes health and well-being are as much a state of mind as they are a state of the body, and when it comes to fitness, food, and life in general, he thinks slow is much better than fast (most of the time). Stopping regularly to examine things is the surest way to put down roots and grow.

He knows he will never be done with his own work, and believes the best thing you can do for your well-being starts with loving and working from what you’ve got right now.