Were you to start reading any article Gwyneth Paltrow were to write about having dinner with a man whom she describes as “a wonderful yogi and important quarterback for mindfulness and meditation in this country,” chances are, the first thing you would do would be to yawn. I know that’s what I did, for sure. I yawn whenever I think about Paltrow anyway. But, according to Paltrow and her wonderful yogi (who is, natch, a white dude named Michael Lear), you are a giant failure at yawning and probably doing it wrong. Shocker!
Here is how you are actually supposed to be yawning, we guess.
Gently tilt your head back to a comfortable position and allow your mouth to hang open widely while you gently extend into it.
Contract the back of the throat as if to perform Ujjayi breathing—a whispery breath—which is typically done through your nose with your mouth closed. Breathe deeply through your mouth so you feel the air hit the back of your throat.
Inhale and exhale completely while allowing your shoulders to relax as you exhale.
When the yawn comes, reach and extend into it, riding the yawn to stretch the jaw muscles.
Repeat 8-10 times until tearing starts. As your jaw muscles stretch and relax, and the yawn expands, the lacrimal glands around the eye are squeezed and tearing is induced.
Oh, ok. Good to know. However, I’d like to toss in my own personal recommendation for yawning in public, and that is – even if you must do this whole ritual – that you please cover your mouth because maybe other people don’t need to see your uvula while they are trying to eat, ok?
You should also be reminded that even if you figure out how to yawn correctly, you are probably still failing Gwyneth in any number of ways, particularly if you are not regularly steaming your vulva.
Original by Robyn Pennacchia