Prana-what, you say?

Put simply, pranayama is mindful breathwork. Working with your breath is another great tool for helping to ride out difficult emotions or settling an anxious mind. You can practice pranayama anywhere: on the bus to work, seated at your desk, during a yoga class or standing quietly in the hallway before a big presentation.

Pranayama is a wonderful way to help calm or energize your body. Depending what you're looking for in any particular moment, there's a variety of excellent practices that span mindfulness and yoga traditions.

Check out this charming video all about pranayama from our friends over at Embodied Philosophy. This New York-based online school of Eastern philosophy offers a fantastic variety of short animated videos introducing meditative and yogic concepts.

Spend a few minutes exploring their beautifully-curated introductions to dharma, bhakti, and more. They're a great introduction to some of the rich ancient philosophies behind contemporary mindfulness practices.

For more on pranayama, check out this recent Yoga Journal article, "5 Reasons To Practice Pranayama."

Feature photo by Janita Sumeiko