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  • Writer's pictureAudrey Oxenhorn, MSW

Multidimensionality, The Square Breath and The Sorting Box

Find a quiet and private space for this quick exercise.

There is a great breathing exercise called the Square or Four-part Breath. Let’s take a moment and do it.

Please sit up straight, chest open, shoulders back

Breathe in through your nose for the count of 4

Hold your breath for 4

Breathe out through your nose or mouth for 4

No breath for 4

Repeat 2 times

Right now you may be feeling a bit more relaxed and in the moment.

You may also be feeling spacey and calmer.

You may have exited out of fight or flight and into rest and digest.


While you are here you can begin thinking more clearly about what is going on in your life.

Are there decisions to be made?

Relationships to sort out?

Past habits are no longer working?

Old friends are no longer a good match?

It is helpful to begin sorting things out in a multidimensional way.

We are used to simplifying what is going on. We use labels to identify what we really don’t want to look at.

He is a jerk.

She is borderline.

He is manic.

She has ADHD.

He is grieving.

He is old.

She is too young.

By doing so we are missing the full picture and our role in the drama.

What if everything and everyone has multiple aspects to it? What if we are born knowing the complexity and then lose it through maturity and our educational system?

When my kids were young, I had a close friend, named Alice. Our toddlers brought us together and there were many good times. And after several years, I ended the relationship.

My reason was that she took advantage of me.

If I look at the experience through a multidimensional lens, it was much more complex.

Physically: We did not have neighbors for play dates, and our daughters got along well. I desperately wanted a friend since we were new to the area.

Emotionally: I lacked self-confidence as a new wife and mother and depended upon her.

Mentally: I was a new-ish psychotherapist and she was well established in the field.

Spiritually: We were supposed to meet and continue our friendship from other lifetimes.

Soul: We were unable to sustain a healthy connection for ourselves and for our kids

Or we could take a multidimensional look at the Covid 19 pandemics' impact on ourselves

Physically: I loved the quiet and the introverted part of me was happy

I was isolated from friends and family for a long time

Emotionally: I was very lonely and vulnerable

Mentally: I was able to reinvent my practice and go fully virtual

Spiritually: I was still and looked inward more often. I learned and practiced animal communication

Soul: A huge time of growth and self-awareness.

What if we have lived with partial truths and stories for many years and we are now opening up to the multidimensionality of life? What if our children are seeing us clearly and we are beginning to wake up? What if the next time your child or partner says something wise about you, you take a square breath and begin sorting out your parts?

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