We breathe all day. But do we realize in what way our breathing influences our thoughts, feelings, and behavior?
We asked zero-to-nine questions to Tamara Groen / Breathbliss from Amsterdam (video in Dutch).
0. Who do you think you are?
I am the formless awareness that witnesses my mind, body and life experiences on this earth.
I know that sounds a bit hippie, but it’s what I believe. To explain; I am not my body, I am that what experiences the senses my body has. My body is the vehicle.
What I teach is body awareness; what does the vehicle tell you? Because regardless of what’s going on in your life, your mind or your relationships; your body will tell.
It saves your experiences for you to feel at any moment and being aware of that opens opportunities for you to lead a more conscious and happy life.
To help you achieve that, I work with sound, conscious breathing, movement and awareness. Although most people know me for private sessions, workshops and retreats, I teach at companies as well, because by connecting to yourself you can connect to others, and that is what companies do.
1. What was the most defining moment in your career and how did it influence you?
A long time ago, I lost my job while working for a multinational. A lot was happening at the time, and I did not agree on their course so they fired me. My paid leave gave me the time to think about what I really wanted to do. The real Aha-moment than then came during my first breathing session with Bassam Younes, a teacher from Australia. I knew instantly that this was a profound technique for me and I invited him into my house for more than two months to teach me everything he knew on meditation, yoga and breathwork.
I started giving sessions for family and friends, and from here it kept on growing and I kept on learning. Before I knew it I was doing my own retreats.
2. Who would you like to sit next to on your next flight, and where would it take you?
I don’t really care next to who it is, because I can learn something from everyone.
But if I had to choose it would be the Dalai Lama. He radiates the ease of having an answer to everything by being grounded.
Also, he seems to want to share without ego, and that is what I admire. I would like to do a round-the-world-trip so we’d really have the time.
3. What is the best book, movie or work of art that you would like everyone to enjoy?
‘The Temple’ at Burning Man. I was there in 2014. It is a place for remembering those who passed, but also a place for celebrating love.
The energy that it gave me was fantastic: love, tranquility, respect, all in one space. I had the feeling that time stood still.
Though maybe it is not a good idea if everybody goes there, because it would get too crowded;-)
4. What is the motto you would like to share with everyone in the world?
You live the way you breathe, your [you] breathe the way you live.
You breathe every moment of the day, so if you breathe freely, you live freely.
– Tamara Groen
5. What is the best mistake you have ever made?
I don’t believe in mistakes. Everything I experience is part of the journey.
I’d rather not take life too seriously.
6. Who is the best teacher you’ve ever had?
My own ego. It asks me questions like ‘are you sure’ and it helps me navigate through life.
To explain: to me, the Ego is the layers, the conditioning of everything I have experienced earlier, that reflects back on where I am now. To always keep on researching and questioning.
A lot of those layers are ‘saved’ in the body, and you can really experience that; the body never lies.
7. What are you working on right now?
We do a lot of different retreats on different topics. Right now we are creating one about conscious desire.
But my main thing is making connections on the work floor better. A lot of people cannot be themselves at work and I would like them to thrive.
Business owners could be working more conscious on the happiness of their workers, it is an investment that pays off.
The biggest hurdle there is HR language; what is the right language to get my message across better? But we’re getting there;-)
8. What habit would you like to (un)learn?
I would like to be more conscious of “running away” habits that can look like eating, drinking coffee or eat chocolate.
Right now I can have the habit to eat or do something when I feel uncomfortable.
I would like to stay present with any emotion that arises instead of fulfilling physical desires.
9. What question did we forget to ask you?
The question would be: What do you wish for the world?
The answer: That people don’t take life too seriously.
I would like them to feel connected to themselves and each other.
And I would also like to aks the world: when was the last time you sang and danced?
Tamara Breathbliss (Tamara Groen) is a breathing coach who teaches all over the world. (link in Dutch).