Breathing Room: Letting Go So You Can Fully Live

Breathing Room: Letting Go So You Can Fully Live

by Leeana Tankersley

NOOK Book(eBook)

$9.99 $15.00 Save 33% Current price is $9.99, Original price is $15. You Save 33%.
View All Available Formats & Editions

Available on Compatible NOOK Devices and the free NOOK Apps.
WANT A NOOK?  Explore Now


Leeana Tankersley, like so many of us, began to feel overwhelmed by life. And like so many of us, she assumed she was struggling not because life is inherently difficult but because she was personally failing in some way. She knows firsthand what it is to bully yourself, to put yourself down for not being able to keep it all together, to compare yourself to others and find yourself lacking. But she's also discovered that all of the hurt and hostility and pain only add up to a life of holding your breath. What if we could exhale and let go?

Breathing Room
is her beautiful release of self-condemnation, her discovery of the rest that comes when we give ourselves some space to breathe. She draws readers in through shared experiences of perfectionism, jealousy, and striving and shows them how to let go, how to be radically on their own team, and how to experience the broad grace that Christ has offered all of us.

Anyone who has been trying to do it all, who has been putting on a strong front and yet secretly struggling, will find in Breathing Room both a trusted friend and a generous Savior.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781441246134
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
Publication date: 09/30/2014
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 1,039,782
File size: 3 MB

About the Author

Leeana Tankersley holds English degrees from Liberty University and West Virginia University. She and her Navy SEAL husband, Steve, are currently stationed in San Diego, California, with their three children: Luke, Lane, and Elle. Leeana writes about living from the spacious place on her blog,
Leeana Tankersley is the author of Found Art, Breathing Room, and Brazen, and holds English degrees from Liberty University and West Virginia University. Leeana's writing has been featured in The Huffington Post,,, and She is a regular contributor to MOPS, both as a writer and speaker. Leeana speaks to groups all over the country about waking up those beautiful and sacred parts of each of us that can go dormant. She and her husband, Steve, live in San Diego, California, with their three kids. Learn more at

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews

Breathing Room: Letting Go So You Can Fully Live 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
Cindy_A More than 1 year ago
This book came at a great time from me. Funny how the Lord does that! That said it made this book all the better to me. One part that stood out to me was when the author told her friend that, “I feel like I’m running, running, running all the time. I feel like something ‘s casing me and is about to catch me.” She then shared that, “The fear in all of us is that if we stop running we will be crushed by what’s at our heels.”  If you feel like that read this book! How she walks through that fear is truly inspiring.    
loriweller1 More than 1 year ago
Breathing Room is not a self -help book. It is a book, by a person's own examples in living, how to go about and "breathe". It demonstrates that there is a better way of living then existing with all of society's expectations. Leeana shares her struggles in life and all the good and bad ways she coped. I learned alot about myself(both good and bad) throughout the book. The book also is strong in showing how with Christ we can do and be anything.  I received this book from the Book Club Network in exchange for my honest opinion.
LanguageTCH More than 1 year ago
Breathing Room is an encouraging book by Leeana Tankersley—words that help a person who is in a time of self-condemnation, a time of inability to cope, or a time of struggling to manage life. She calls these times, the Hard. She relates her own struggles when her family moved to Bahrain for her husband’s job as a Navy SEAL. She has been through the difficult times and confronted the toxic voices that attack with accusations of inadequacy and failure. The story of her experiences in itself is an interesting read, but the wisdom that she imparts about beginning again, accepting oneself and releasing the negativity, and living each day are very helpful. She encourages a person to continue in the midst of oppression, insecurity, self-doubt, and resistance and to reach out for help with life. This quote from the book seems to summarize her intent: “Show up and participate in what life has in front of you, in what God is doing in your life.” Each chapter begins with a meaningful quote from literature or someone famous or from scripture. She includes a recommended reading list at the end and her blog site in which the reader can gain more help and insights. I would recommend this book to everyone whether or not you are experiencing struggle with life at this time. It would be a good reference book to have on hand. I received this book through TBCN in exchange for an honest review.
beemama More than 1 year ago
Breathing Room: Letting Go So You Can Fully Live by Leeana Tankersley Publ: Revell c.2014 Leeana opens this book by saying that the opposite of holding your breath is not inhaling but exhaling.  She then proceeds to show you how she walked from a place of holding her breath emotionally, mentally and spiritually to learning to exhale in the Hard places of life, allowing you to see all the dark places she had to walk through before she learned to breathe.   She leads you to a place where you can see the times and places where you are holding your breath.  You see the effects of holding your breath, both for yourself and those you love.  She shares her coping mechanisms with you and helps you find others that may work better for you.  The lives of others who have been holding their breath are used to help you see the different ways that holding your breath looks. Mostly she gives you hope that there is a way out of the habit of holding your breath, that there is a life after you learn to breathe again, and that when you find yourself holding your breath there is a God there to walk you to wholeness. This book came into my life at a God-appointed time.  I truly needed to hear what Leeanna had to say.  Read this book if you are in a Hard place.  Read this book if you have a loved one in a Hard place.  Read this book and see your life and the lives of those around you changed.  What ever you do READ THIS BOOK. I received this book through the Book Club Network for my unbiased review.
Gee0415 More than 1 year ago
Breathing Room- Leeana Tankersley I was hooked just by the title and the words under it; "letting go do you can fully live". The book became a homework book to me. A good homework book, as I read more God was the director and Leeana was the teacher through her words and God's word's. I personally hung onto things that were making my life miserable. I am sure the people around me as well. I had to take the chance and let go when I did it was not only one of the best things I have done but this book that Leeana has written was one of the best books books I have read. This being so much of a self-help book should be on the shelves ahead of any other self-help books. This one is a WINNER!!! If you have not read this book you are missing out on a change that can be made in your own life. Leeana what a blessing you are...God Bless You!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Perfect Timing!  I needed this book at just the time I read it.  During the last several weeks I have been dealing with a parent diagnosed with an incurable brain tumor.  I have felt like I have been failing in every area of my life—as a wife, as a daughter, as a friend, as an employee and most of all as a Christian.  This book was SO freeing!  I am not alone and I am NOT God’s biggest disappointment!  If you have gone through, or are going through some stuff—no matter how small you THINK is SHOULD be or others try to convince you it is, I highly recommend this book.  Take a step back and BREATH! I received this book from Book Club Network in exchange for my honest review.  
ShareeS More than 1 year ago
Every once in awhile a book comes along that is truly exceptional. A perfect rating does not seem like a good enough way to commend the author. Every once in awhile a book comes along that has the reader talking back to the book while reading it; maybe with replies of, “Amen! Absolutely! Finally, someone understands!” Every once awhile a book comes along and makes the reader feel like they are meeting one on one with the author. Breathing Room is that book. Often Christian books are encouraging but not always understanding. They provide an encouraging word but rarely have I found, as a reader, that they truly speak about the suffering in such a way that does not minimize it or gloss over it. Rather, Leanna Tankersley gets in the knee deep pain right along with the reader. Breathing Room speaks wonderfully to women in many stages of life -- from a new mother to a matured wife to a new believer. With quotes from many different areas, Leanna Tankersley applies literature and wisdom to each chapter with practical understanding from real life experiences. I loved when she spoke about homesickness, being overwhelmed and just needing to breathe. She uses scripture throughout the book as well as stories from The Bible and gives them real life application. There are so many great quotes from this book and I wish I could list them all but a few of my favorites are: In a section where Mrs. Tankersley tells a story of Stephen King, she talks about stealing time away, “Carve out a corner in this world, steal some time like Stephen King, and get to work. The world is waiting for you. Yes, small little everyday you. Yes, you, Worthy old you.” (pg. 96) Mrs. Tankersley is speaking of Jesus healing the woman with the issue of blood and she states, “Jesus is so good like that. Saving the one. Even if, especially if, that one has been discarded by everyone else.” (pg. 116) “When it was time to pull things together, I could make it work. I could be as high functioning as needed, actually. But so little came from a place of ease or centeredness. My living – and this has been true of me for as long as I can remember – almost always originated out of a place of stress and striving. I rarely felt comfortable in my own skin.” (pg. 146) To say I enjoyed Breathing Room is such an understatement. It is a book that I will keep on my bookshelves and one I’ll gladly share. It’s a book that is applicable to every age group and one that moved me beyond words and into a new area of acceptance. I recommend it, I loved it and in a rating system of five stars for the best book, I’d give it 10. I received this book from the Book Club Network in exchange for my honest opinion.
DBeason More than 1 year ago
Have you ever read a book and thought that you would love to be friends with that person? That’s how I felt while reading “Breathing Room” by Leanna Tankersley. She has an easy-to-read writing style and even with the subject, made me laugh out loud several times. She tells her story of moving with her Navy SEAL husband and three kids to Bahrain – but that’s not the story. Deep down she struggles with feeling overwhelmed and inadequate. I’ve had these feelings so I could relate to so much of what she wrote. At one point she writes, “In the Come Aparts of life, we find that we have lost some of our capacity to muster, some of our capacity to perform well.” We take on responsibilities and expectations – real and perceived – and feel we must “perform well” like we have so many times before. Throughout the book she shares stories of feeling so tired that what she could present on the outside became harder to manage and to keep up. “Certainly there are seasons in life when we must manage. But ‘managing’” can be a habitual state of being, and the next thing you know, we are urgently living out of a perpetual deficit instead of taking the time to investigate what we really need, what we’re really longing for.” But this is a book of hope – we can grow and heal by giving ourselves permission to pursue rest, to get help, to stop, and to breathe. “We can offer ourselves permission to pursue a passion, to dream, to forgive, to get on the treadmill.” One of my favorite lines in the whole book is, “Now is the time to care for yourself as you would a dear friend.” I strongly recommend this book if you’re feeling overwhelmed – like you can’t breathe and you can’t maintain pretenses anymore. There is hope. I received a free book from Revell (a division of Baker Publishing Group) through The Book Club Network, Inc., in exchange for an unbiased review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Accept your own humanity, forgive yourself and extend grace to your soul 'Keep it all together. Get the to do list tackled. Don't be out of sorts. Be friendly and happy!' Where are these voices coming from? All in my own head. We try to be strong, to be the person we want to be. We have an image of what a woman should look like . We keep striving for pintrest-like perfection but it's always out of our reach. Leanna Tankersley's personal and intimate description of her journey of learning to accept her own humanity is an invitation to breathe deeply and exhale, showing us how letting go can help us live more fully. I know I need to RSVP to that and just let go of all my 'shoulds' and just realize that I am not Superwoman and I can't do it all. The book is a view into her world of crazy. Living as a wife of a Navy Seal, having twins and a newborn and living in Bahrain. How she just survived and learned to give herself grace instead of condemning herself for not being able to measure up to her own standards. Being dysfunctional and real is too vulnerable. There's so much potential for hurt. She shares some great tips for how to let go. One chapter in particular rang true with me, 'Beginning Again." She shares some of her failures as a mom and how each day and even each moment is a new chance to begin again, to start over. To say I'm sorry and have a clean slate. To be forgiven and to forgive yourself. I have a tough problem with forgiving myself. I think I should know better and not mess up so much, but I'm learning that I'm a human and I need to extend grace to myself like I do to others. She discusses grief and her sadness after a miscarriage and so expertly explains grief: 'Grieving is the process of recognizing the loss of what might have been....The bothersome thing about grief is that it rolls in, life a wave, and then rolls back out again. You never know when it's going to hit. Some days it just pooled around my feet. Some days it knocked me over, completely submerged." The book reads like a series of insightful blog posts, some I could have skipped over and some I held onto in my mind and camped out on. Part narrative, part reflective, part encouragement, each chapter was a quick few pages and easy to mentally chew on.
Cheri5 More than 1 year ago
I had the privilege of reading Breathing Room by Leeana Tankersley. I think a lot of women especially will be able to relate to the struggles that Ms. Tankersley experienced. I loved how she started out the book and didn’t dwell so much on her struggles (although allowed the reader a peak into what she was dealing with in her daily life so we could sympathize and relate to each other) but instead allowed the reader to feel “safe” to feel whatever feelings he/she wanted to regarding our own personal struggles. The struggles themselves weren’t focused on but instead the main point I took away from the book was “permission to feel” the struggles, really feel them, and then emerge with God’s help out on the other side. Not dismiss them, not pretend they didn’t exist, and not ignore the symptoms that emerged as a result of them. No, she invited us to really dig into what was causing the “critical line” in our lives and then to see how God wanted to bring us out on the other side. This book is great for anyone who is feeling trapped or “in too deep” or just at the point where they need life to stop for a second or two or one hundred. I think this book will be a great encouragement to those who need some breathing room - and if we’re all honest, everyone has needed breathing room at one point or another in our lives. That’s the way modern society works - keeping people moving at a frantic speed until they can’t do it anymore. I received this book for free from Book Club Network and the publisher in exchange for my honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
My Take: Im taking part in Revell Publishers blog tour for upcoming titles and this book caught my eye, probably because I was feeling down in the dumps at the time. But I was slightly disappointed. It didn't really live up to the back cover or what people were saying about it. God seems to take a secondary role, Tankersley does mention bible story's but does not quote actual scripture. Most of the time I felt I couldn't relate. I did like some parts though, such as her personal experiences I even had to laught at some of them. I really liked the chapter about prayer. I would recommend this book mainly to young or middle aged mothers.
beautyintheeveryday More than 1 year ago
*I received this book from Revell as a reviewer, but am not required to give a good review. This is all my honest, unbiased, gooshing with love for this book. I would tell you straight if it was stinky. Just the title struck me. I didn't need to know more. I ordered it immediately.  Then I read the back cover teaser: "Catastrophe or no catastrophe, if you are unhinged, disoriented, suffocating, or otherwise generally dragging, I'm inviting you to pull up a chair at this table..." Wow. Yep, she was talking to ME! I am all of those things! By the time I was half way through the first page of the prelude, you read that right...the prelude, I knew that this book would be life altering for me. Leanna said this that described me perfectly: "I had been holding my breath for years-probably more years than I realized-trying to manage the pain in my chest. Trying to stave off surrender. Trying to keep it all together. Until I couldn't anymore." Woosh.  I read those words and let my breath out for the first time in ages and tears ran down my face. Yes. This was me too. I have held my breath for so long that I don't think my body knows what having oxygen is like.  I devoured the first 5 chapter before I knew what hit me. It felt like my new friend, Leanna, had opened up herself and had written me a beautiful letter sharing her pain, struggle, and crazy, but also her hope, healing, and how she learned to breathe again. Through stories, quotes, scriptures, and observations, Leanna paints a beautiful picture of how our letting go of our need to control, manage, perfect, and hold together every bit of everything can open us up to a beautiful, creative, open, and expansive life that is enjoyed and savored rather than endured. She offers no "how to" list or things that we need to beat up ourselves over. Quite the opposite, actually. She encourages us to stop bullying ourselves, to listen to our bodies and what they need, and for us to love and mother ourselves the way we would a beloved child. I wish I could share with you every bit that I highlighted, underlined, and wrote YES!!! next to, but then that would spoil it for you. :)  If you are like me and in need of a breathing lesson or two, read this book. I laughed at her writing and several time wondered if I actually wrote parts of it. Other places, I cried because they touched me in a dark place that I hadn't believed anyone else understood. Can I say this again? Please read this book. I know that you will feel like a breeze blew through the room and made you able to let your breath out. I am already planning on giving it to several friends as gifts because I know they deserve to breathe again too.
VicG More than 1 year ago
Leeana Tankersley in her new book, “Breathing Room”  published by Revell teaches us Letting Go So You Can Fully Live. From the Back Cover:  AN INVITATION TO BREATHE Catastrophe or no catastrophe, if you are unhinged, disoriented, suffocating, or otherwise generally dragging, I’m inviting you to pull up a chair at this table . . . Breathing Room is a beautiful release of self-condemnation, a discovery of the rest that comes when we offer ourselves some space to breathe. Vulnerable and winsome, Leeana Tankersley shows you how to stop beating yourself up, how to be radically on your own team, and how to truly experience grace. If you’ve been putting on a strong front and yet are secretly coming apart, you’ll find in these pages a trusted friend. Who is the biggest bully in your life? You are. Who is the person you bully? You, of course. We compare ourselves to others and continually come up short. We analyze situations we had been in and feel we could have handled things better, we even remember those situations years later and what does that accomplish? Nothing, except it locks us into a box with very little wiggle room. Ms. Tankersley tells us that if we hold our breath eventually our body will start an alarm to warn us that we must breath. According to her what the body is telling us is that we must eliminate Carbon Dioxide before we take a breath. We have to let go of all the bad before we can let in any good. That is what “Breathing Room” is all about. It is a tool to help let go of all the bullying that we give ourselves and allow God in to help heal us and get us going in the right direction. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Revell.   I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
Moonpie72 More than 1 year ago
Too often I have approached life’s crises and frustrations like a Sumo wrestler.  I am going to overcome whatever I face and continue to juggle all the plates of responsibility in my life.  Of course it never worked that way and I resorted to accusing myself of being a substandard Christian, wife, mother, pastor’s wife.   In reality, my view was not  . . . well reality!  I was doing it in my own strength and leaving Christ out!   Without Him I can do nothing!  This book helped me look back in the past, in the present and the future, take a deep full breath, and exhale.  It shed light on the fact that I am sometimes my own worst enemy.  The devil doesn’t have to do a thing because I will take the stick of guilt and failure and beat myself!  Add to that the extra challenges we face and life can literally squeeze the breath out of us . . if we let it.  By not stepping back and letting go, we not only devastate ourselves but we also drag all that baggage into the next day, and the next until we are so overwhelmed we feel like we are suffocating.   I appreciate Ms. Tankersley’s being so open, transparent, and vulnerable in sharing her story.  Not that I want anyone to have problems but hearing that someone else struggles makes me feel not as alone.  In old movies when the woman got hysterical, someone would slap her across the face to get her attention. I guess you could say her book was a good slap in the face.  It made me step back, yes breath, and really look at what I have done.  Best of all she helped me turn everything back to God.  To realize the love and help He is waiting to give me.  He is my strength and solution.  Sometimes we are so caught up in our “moments” that we need someone to remind us of the Truth.   The scripture than came to mind, that sums up the authors message is 2 Chronicles 20:17. Ye shall not need to fight in this battle: set yourselves, stand ye still, and see the salvation of the LORD with you, O Judah and Jerusalem: fear not, nor be dismayed; tomorrow go out against them: for the LORD will be with you. I received this book free from Revell Publishing, which requires an honest, though not necessarily positive, review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
dhiggins4 More than 1 year ago
Wow! What a great book! I learned so much and was so inspired by this book! Sometimes we, as women, tend to beat ourselves up and feel like we aren't good enough if we don't measure up to the so called "superwoman"! We put on a good front saying we're okay when deep down inside we are drowning and running out of breath! In this book, Leeana Tankersley show us how to stop bullying ourselves and how to breathe! She uses examples from her own life how she struggled with this area and how she overcame it. I would definitely recommend this book to all women out there. I think we all struggle, somewhat, in this area We tend to put more on ourselves than we need to and sometimes we just need someone else giving us advice on how to get over it. I look forward to reading more books by Leeana Tankersley. I received this book from bookfun for my honest opinion.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
In the midst of the challenges of motherhood, miscarriage, and moving her family to follow her Navy Seal husband to the country of Bahrain, Leeana found herself in a very dark place. Sharing her story in a transparent, relatable way she creates for the reader a sense of being understood and uplifted, as if sharing one’s struggles with a caring and very wise friend. No matter the unique nature of your individual circumstance everyone can benefit from the wisdom Leeana offers as she exposes the insidious nature of the myriad things that bind us…toxic voices, a desire for control, self-bullying, fear, grief, lack of accomplishment and direction, or just the fact that life, at times, is undeniably hard. Coming through loud and clear is the message almost every woman needs to hear…show yourself compassion. More than a message on how to seek peace without, Leeana stresses the truth that “If your insides aren’t peaceful it matters not what’s outside.” Not just preachy but practical, Leeana offers substantial, sound advice that provides welcome relief from the diverse challenges of simply being human…of being alive. Her relaxed, relatable writing sytle make this book breathing room in itself, creating a sense of calm and comfort simply in the reading. You will come away refreshed…and relieved.
Jocelyn_Green More than 1 year ago
I adored this book. Leeana Tankersley goes out on a limb (a whole tree of them, actually) in sharing her most vulnerable spots with us, and the raw emotion surrounding them. True to its title, reading Breathing Room really did fill my lungs with air and encourage me to calm down, slow down, and to not be so unreasonably hard on myself for feeling stress though my life is full of blessings. I love this quote from early on in the book: "Let's talk about how we are both blessed and struggling.Struggle and gratitude are not two ends of a dichotomy. In God's world, they can simultaneously co-exist."  Leeana's voice is uniquely engaging, and by allowing us into her struggles, she allows us to explore our own, through the lens of God's love for us. I found Breathing Room to be refreshing and life-giving. ~Jocelyn Green, author of Faith Deployed: Daily Encouragement for Military Wives