Recently I've been able to put more of my time into my sweeping breath practice. It's a way of reviewing my life, looking at the influences and cleaning out the emotional baggage. I hit a point in my practice where I could extend it easily, and I hit a point in my business where I could carve out the time to do this practice. It's kind of like a four week intensive extra time practice.
I've noticed my skill getting better in many ways, most of which are settled and I cannot describe in words very well. For instance the the quality of my breath and the quality of my breathing. For a while there I had to push the breath out, and now I find that I can get a smooth or longer release by using belly breathing better. The feeling of the air as it passes over the back of my throat is different when I'm highly concentrated on some event or feeling of the past. How I do this and how it feels are very difficult to describe exactly.
Another skill that I've been able to increase is my skill to realize how much emotional baggage there is in a certain event or memory. Along with that I've become much better at understanding when that baggage is half gone or gone in the event it is now clear. This means I don't waste extra time on some events, and it also helps me identify other events that need work. It literally is just like cleaning the house. Clean one closet, and after it's clean go to the next room or closet and clean it out too.
But in order to get that memory 'cleaned' I have to take many breaths, and focus on the event or memory for an extended period of time. I can't just remember it breathe a couple times and call it quits. Imagine it like a closet full of bags. You can't just open the closet take out two bags, and say it's clean, unless of course the closet only has two bags in it. But how many closets have only two bags in them?
This leads to a side benefit that I didn't realize before I started all this. My power of concentration is increasing. Now that doesn't mean it's very good yet. It just means my power of concentration is better than before. I can notice a change. And I can see that I have to increase my power of concentration quite a bit more. But this is one of those virtuous cycles. The more baggage I clean out, the fewer distractions I have. The fewer distractions I have, the easier it is to concentrate. So the whole process tends to make itself better and better.
Concentration is a key component of getting work done. It's absolutely required for learning new things. And it's a great skill to have when you're listening to people. In short, concentration is a kind of life skill and it helps you in many many areas of life. Doing this sweeping breath practice is slowly but surely producing side benefits in other areas of my life.