Change Your Breathing, Change Your Life

I use breath as the remote control of your nervous system

An interview with Bob Soulliere of Breathe Your Power

Bob Soulliere is the energy behind the Breath Your Power community in Alexandria, Virginia. He is a Level 2 Wim Hof Method Instructor, Level 2 Buteyko Educator, and Advanced Oxygen Advantage Instructor. They host weekly workshops and other adventure events designed to take people to the next level in health, in success and in life.

He says, “The power to be happy, healthy, and strong is within each of us, natively.

With breathwork, tired defenses drop, bodies become more energetic and engaged, and often participants express a sense of “I had no idea” at their own power.”

What are the benefits of breathwork that you’ve seen in your group?

I’d like to paint a wider picture than breathwork, though breathing is foundational.

Yoking breathing with mindset with physiology, neurology, and hormetic practices such as cold exposure produces dramatic results.  Some we’ve seen include:

 

  • getting off years of $500/month migraine meds,
  • reversing the need for oral surgery,
  • ending panic attacks and chronic fibromyalgia pain,
  • a wide range of athletic improvements.

But most dramatically, open hearts.

People expanding their lives, living bigger, taking risks joyfully…. such as writing their first book, horseback riding, swimming the English Channel, rolling down a hill like a kid, finding joy in everyday life.

 

How would you describe breathwork?

I use breath as the remote control of your nervous system, for you to contact your self-control and your power.

It is your life force, and in my work, you use breath to impact performance, physiology, immune response, inflammation, oxygen uptake, recovery, HRV, blood chemistry, and mindset (as an incomplete list).

Breathwork itself is a wide net, and includes any practice where you breathe a certain way for a desired effect. 

There are as many breath traditions and practices as there are cultural groups. The Rosary and Om, both old forms of meditative prayer from different spiritual traditions, are or can double as breath practices, for example. Both set you to a breathing rate of approximately 6 breaths per minute, our resonant breathing frequency, the healthiest breath rate.

Because we must constantly breath, every breath is an opportunity for breathwork. And while it isn’t practical or desirable to be aware of every breath, engaging in any form of conscious breathing is the first and last step in breathwork.

In other words, awareness is key, and it is the gateway to change.

But for me, the practices I focus on either align your breathing with your metabolic needs (functional breathing) for 99% of your day-to-day life, or temporarily put you into a state where deep change is possible (such as Wim Hof, Rebirthing, Holotropic, and lots of pranayama variants).

When choosing a breathwork practice, begin with the end in mind: what is your purpose? What are you trying to feel or experience? Then find the breathing practice that supports it.

 

How has breathwork transformed your life?

20 years ago on our honeymoon, our 80-yr old yoga instructor said that the most important thing you will ever learn is to breathe. Which sounded like complete nonsense to me. But it stuck.

What she forgot to say is that breathing is the remote control of your nervous system. And your nervous system is your entire experience of life. *That* is why it’s important. And now I know that.

My heart is so much more open (though not always – it’s a work in progress). I am far bolder, less afraid, more joyful, healthier, fitter, funner, more myself, and not afraid of death….

Just afraid of not living fully.

And now I have seen hundreds wake up to their power, and understand that my role is simply to point people back at themselves, at their own inner power, to believe in them, and they will emerge, and bring their light into this world. And that is wonderful. Literally.

The Wim Hof Method has brought me confidence, an open heart, resilience, and as a Certified Instructor, I want to share what I’ve learned with my local community, and everyone!

 

What do you do through your community “Breathe Your Power”?

I go beyond the workshops. I hold the tribe together, offer opportunities for cross-pollination, exploration, and growth, and provide an atmosphere of kindred spirits that extends the love and support and can-do attitude.

So it’s not just an awesome 4-hour Wim Hof Method or 3-week Oxygen Advantage program and then poof, all that energy is gone and you’re just trimming the hedges for the 100th time wondering where all the fun and growth went.

We extend our community connection with:

  • Hoffer’s Hikes (with a dip in a cold natural body of water)
  • The opportunity to assist at a workshop once you’ve been a participant (a big freebie)
  • Super-advanced opportunities such as coached (by me) Wim Hof Power of the Mind 8-week course
  • A monthly BYP Book Bunch that dives deeper into topics (we’ve done Wim Hof’s “The Wim Hof Method”, Bruce Lipton’s “The Biology of Belief”, Alex Hutchinson’s “Endure”, Scott Carney’s “The Wedge” (and Scott came to the meeting))
  • Monday WHM breathing Zoom lunch breaks
  • Full moon fire and ice drumming parties

As well as even further extensions into other disciplines as their practitioners find me and I find them: such as a group training for English Channel swims; mindset programs such as Trident Mindset; and numerous podcasts, conferences, and group appearances.

Meet Bob Soulliere

Bob Soulliere is a Level 2 Wim Hof Method Instructor, Level 2 Buteyko Educator, and Advanced Oxygen Advantage Instructor from Alexandria, Virginia.

Through his company, Breathe Your Power, he has trained hundreds to take the steering wheel of their nervous system through breath and controlled stressors to improve mental and sports performance, address breathing pattern dysfunctions, reduce chronic stress, and more fully experience the beauty in every moment of life.

He is partnering with dental practices, special operators and mindset programs, CrossFits, triathlon and open-water swim programs, and the military PTSD community, among others. At the intersection of mindset, physiology, and fun, Bob has seen how learning to relax slightly over the edge of your comfort zone opens the door to a wealth of growth, improvement, and transformation.

 

To learn more about Bob Soulliere and Breath Your Power, visit: IG @breathe.your.power

 

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