If you haven't read part 1 yet - go read it here. Then come back for the rest of the story!

As with all good stories, there's a twist in this tale. Or as you might say - "Well that was unexpected!"

Because even after I'd had that experience with Bring It, I went and did it again.

Yup. You'd think I'd have learned from my past choices. But nope.

This time I signed up to the Group Breathwork Facilitator Training with Breathing Space.

And I did not go into this blind as I did before. My intuition was screaming at me to just do it and so I did. (That's the story in this blog so go check it out if you haven't read it yet.) I had my eyes fully open, I considered whether to do it, then did the intro call, the interview call, read the requirements more than twice, and planned out my time so I would be able to fully commit and get the best out of the time I would be spending on this journey. All before I committed to it.

And it almost worked!

We're nearly 5 months into the course and I have learned SO much. About breathwork, myself, facilitating, all the things. I've learned and practised many different types of breathwork techniques and become accustomed to stopping and just breathing when I need to. As a result, I am not the person who started this journey in November 2023. Subtle changes but they're there.

I'd normally put my success down to planning - because like I did with Bring It, I'm still working and teaching and creating alongside this course. (And it's a lot, don't get me wrong.) But I am so much better at dividing my time now, that it's much easier to get stuff done.

But as we all know, planning only gets you so far. And you cannot plan for personal development curves. We all think we can, but the reality is so far from the truth. And when I decide to go forth and learn something new, I'm thinking mostly about how I can bring whatever I am learning to the world, completely forgetting about the journey I will need to go on myself.

Silly, silly me.

Now, I honed many skills through Bring It - the ability to know and respect my own boundaries, to push through when it's just discomfort, and to show up and be vulnerable in front of 30+ people on a Zoom call. And whilst this Breathing Space group training has less people, it's actually even more vulnerable and scary to show up in all my messy glory.

And I still do it. I show up every seminar and watch the self-paced learning videos - even through the mid-course slump I appear to be in right now. I'm very good at keeping up with those. Mostly because I want to, but also because I know this is the right place for me to be. (Even if I am slacking on the actual important homework tasks right now. Oopsie.)

But I had not planned, nor could I plan for, the self-development curve this would bring. It's not all "live, laugh, love" and deep breaths and yoga poses (alright, not the yoga poses). Because it goes so much further than the fluffy superficial expectations.

Breathwork takes you down to the level where real, true and deep change is made. Beyond the superficial ego to the chambers of your mind and body that need to be cleared out. Like taking a hoover under the sofa to get rid of dust bunnies. Except it's old, stagnant energy instead of dust bunnies.

And oooohhhhh boy.

I was not prepared.

I thought I'd done enough shadow work with Jamie and the Bring Iteers. I was SO ready to leave that work behind and move forward.

Don't get me wrong, I am not naive enough to think that my shadow work was done and finished, and I am now an enlightened guru. But I had not considered just how much deeper shadow work I was going to do. Nor the fact that breathwork would take me there so quickly and completely, and work to clear it out.

The fact that it has, and continues to do so, amazes me. Truly it does.

Being on the receiving end of a breathwork, whether a practice I do myself, or one that is facilitated by someone else, is a unique experience every time. Whether it's a simple box breath for regulation, or the active conscious connected breath that effects change, breathwork is a profound and powerful practice.

But what it also is, for the deeper levels of change, is something not to be underestimated. Even if you go into the practice ready for what you think is going to happen, you still won't be prepared for what will actually happen or the long term effects of it.

Especially in a Conscious Connected Breathwork (CCB). I've attended more online group sessions than I can remember, all different themes at different times in my week, month and life. And before each one I've thought "Ok, let's goooo!" and at the end "Well, that was unexpected!"

Because the journey I expected was absolutely not the journey I went on.

When I first went into a CCB group session, I had visions of serenely lying down, breathing in rhythm to music and being calm and still. Like sleeping but not sleeping, more meditation than breathwork. Because how activating could breathing really be?

Again - oooooh boy.

I was so not prepared.

I've laughed myself silly, I've cried my eyes out, I've wriggled, I've danced lying down and uncovered parts of me that were hidden and dormant. One time I'm pretty sure I just hallucinated for 30 minutes simply from breathing. And the effects of change kept coming even a couple of days after each session was over.

For each one, I knew I was in charge of my own journey, and the facilitator and their support angels were there for support, too. So each time, I trusted myself to go where I needed to go. To let the conscious mind take care of the breathing and the rest of the mind take me wherever the journey led that day. And with the full knowledge that I could come out of it if I wished. (But, I never do. I get too much FOMO to stop breathing CCB on purpose.)

Even with all this experience, I still have plenty of dust bunnies to clear out, and I know that will happen when it's supposed to. I know I'm never given a challenge that I can't rise to meet, and whatever is for me will slap me round the face to get my attention if I ignore it for too long.

So I'm adopting that philosophy for this breathwork journey that will likely last the rest of my life. I'm in charge of my own journey, I have amazing teachers, mentors and peers for support at Breathing Space, and I can take a pause if I want to. My personal development curve will get steeper in places, and plateau in others. And that's OK, it's normal for that to happen. I'll just keep pushing my comfort zone and growing my skills, because I just can't stop myself.

And yes, I will probably continue to underestimate the power of breathwork, because the profound changes it effects are always mind-blowing. But I won't underestimate the amount of work and effort that goes into it - from either the facilitator or the breather. What a wild ride breathwork is. Or if you prefer,

Well, that was unexpected!

P.S. If you want to learn more about Breathing Space, you can do so HERE.

P.P.S. If you want more of my ramblings, click the subscribe button on the bottom right of your screen to never miss out on a blog post!