Brain Tool #7: Yawn-Sigh

Play Daily with These Steps to Boost Your Brain:

1. Begin with an expansive inhale through your nose. Keep your mouth closed & visualize smelling something delicious!
2. Feel the soft palate/nasal passages lift & gently stretch as you inhale (this gently stretch also feels like the beginning of a sneeze with the mouth closed)
3. At the peak  of the lift/stretch open the mouth slightly, as if you are about to yawn (you will feel the back of the throat open)
4. At the beginning (not the full-blown yawn!) of this yawn sensation, vocalize a relaxed “AHHH”  on the exhale
5. Allow the “AHHH” to dip naturally in pitch, just like a normally released “Ah” Basic Yawn Sigh audio clip example
6. Pause & Repeat

Yawn-Sigh Variations to Develop Flexible Thinking:

1. As you yawn-sigh, visualize the location and quality of your bodily/mental tensions. As you vocalize the “AHH”, feel & visualize those tensions being released out & away from your body/mind through the “AHH” sound
2. Extend each subsequent yawn-sigh in length and depth (of breath)
3. Extend the vocal range of your “yawn-sigh”. What effect does this have on your ability to release tension and re-energize? Extended Yawn Sigh audio clip example
4. As you vocalize the “AHH” visualize the yawn-sigh as a rainbow of color
5. Vocalize the yawn-sigh bent over, knees slightly bent, head loose with the crown facing the floor
6. Play with any of the above with the eyes closed

What’s Unique About This Brain Tool:

1. The Yawn-Sigh provides a quick release of unconsciously held tension
2. The Yawn-Sigh’s powerful combo of deep breathing, palate/nasal expansion and released “AHH” improves oxygenation, soothes nerves & relaxes the central nervous system
3. The gentle descending cadence of the “AHH”  relaxes & slows brain activity, making it a great Brain Tool to use before bedtime!
4. The Yawn Sigh is a gentle, natural way to warm-up the voice in preparation for public speaking or teaching