Think about our world today. We have cell phones, Tweets, perpetual notifications and 24 hour news. There has never been this much constant stimuli at any point in history. Don’t forget that we are evolutionary beings; our bodies haven’t quite caught up to it all yet. And…will it ever?
With all of the constant information in the digital age, reconnecting with yourself has never been more important. It’s not just for Highly Sensitive People anymore–it’s for everyone.
The techniques I want to share with you are ‘grounding techniques’. When you say the word “grounding” to yourself, what does it feel like? Personally, it makes me feel more peaceful, connected, and present in my mind, body, and soul. But I can imagine that it might create some resistance if you’ve only heard of it in spiritual circles. I can tell you that times ARE changing and that grounding techniques are now being incorporated into the therapeutic and business world and I hope that we will be teaching it more and more in schools!
Why? Because they work!
As a Highly Sensitive Person, it has been the biggest gifts I have given myself. Moments of grounding thoughout my day. Mini bliss moments….
It is one of the many self-care practices that I have incorporated in everyday life to make sure that I don’t burnout ever again. Because, well, 3 times before my 32nd birthday is enough.
So what exactly is “grounding”, and how can it help you reduce stress, come back to the moment, and bring back ease and flow into your world?
Grounding just means bringing yourself out of your head and into your body. It’s reestablishing a connection between the mind, the body, and the soul so that you are present in your body rather than trapped in your ego driven thoughts.
How does grounding help? When you connect to your body, you connect to the present moment. You see what’s in front of you and respond from a place of alignment rather than a place of anxiety, depression, or fear. In this moment, all is well.
Let’s say that out of the blue you’re confronted with an unexpected challenge. If you find yourself stuck in your head instead being present in the moment, panic might take over before you know it. And just like that, your head is creating a story based on what it THINKS is going on.
But when you’re able to ground yourself, you aren’t stuck in your head anymore. You connect with what is truly happening rather than what you imagine is happening. And you can respond from a place of alignment rather than a place of panic.
Sounds like a better alternative, doesn’t it?
So how do you make this magical practice work for you? I’m going to share with you three types of grounding that go from simple sensory reboots all the way to expansive soul connections.
The goal is reuniting your mind, body, and soul….and it all starts with coming back to the moment. So let’s get into my favorite top three techniques right now!
Grounding Tip #1: Get Moving
Sometimes it really is a simple as just getting yourself moving. When you’re feeling scattered and out of sorts, nothing will bring you back faster than changing up your movement and getting your body going.
Now, it’s not exactly the most practical thing in the world if you find yourself having a sudden panic attack. But it’s something you can use on a daily basis to help release stress before it becomes too big to manage.
And if you can move your body out in nature, the energy shifting effects will multiply in your favor. If you’re in a place where your feet can touch the grass, for example, that extra sensory experience will make the connection to the moment even deeper. And in a forest you get an extra boost because of the phytoncides that trees release! Forest bathing is an actual thing!
Even if you can’t be in nature, any kind of movement shift your energy and bring you back to the moment. So definitely make the most of it as often as you can.
Grounding Tip #2: Reboot Your Senses
Years ago in the professional world,“connecting to yourself” focused exclusively on the mind through modalities like cognitive therapy. But in recent years, connecting with the senses in therapeutic settings has become just as important as being aware of your thoughts.
It has given rise to a new twist on grounding. And it has made a difference for patients with panic and anxiety in a way that dwelling exclusively on the mind never could.
The best part is that anybody can use these tips at any given moment! All you need is a few moments and a little bit of focus. You can do this at your home, your office, or anywhere that those twinges of the mind catch you off guard.
It’s a method that’s as easy as 5, 4, 3, 2, and 1. Let me show you what I mean!
Let’s say that you have a moment where panic is starting to creep in. What can you do to stop it in its tracks and bring yourself back? Focus on your senses and bring your attention to the space that you’re in right now.
First, choose five things in your environment. Any five things. And give them your full attention. Maybe you might see a desk, a chair, a clock, a vase of flowers. Doesn’t matter what it is. Connect through your sight to the world around you. Notice what’s there. Repeat to yourself, “I am here” and direct your focus outward.
Second, find four things that you can feel. Maybe it’s the texture of the upholstery on your chair. It might be the smoothness of the tabletop. When you make physical contact with something through your sense of touch, you bring awareness to your fingers as well as to your body.
Third, what are three things that you can hear? Feel the quiet around you. Then listen for what rises above it. You might hear a clock ticking. Maybe a computer or a refrigerator humming. Perhaps people having a conversation in the next room.
Fourth, what are two things that you can smell in the space around you? It could be anything, from the coffee in your cup to the flowers on your desk. Focus on two distinct smells that tell you where you are.
Now that you’ve engaged all of your senses. So what is the last step to this process?
Focus on one thing that you appreciate about yourself. What is the one thing that makes you feel the proudest? What makes you the most grateful for being you? Choose one thing you love and let it fill you with appreciation.
That’s what grounding is–connecting to the NOW realigning your body, mind, and soul. And from this space it’s so much easier to think, isn’t it?
Grounding Tip #3: Connect To Your Soul
This one might sound a little more “woo woo” and that is ok…I am very “woo woo” but it’s a very beautiful and powerful one, too. It can be done anywhere, if you’re willing to take a moment, take a deep breath, and receive the energetic connection that is always there for you.
You can sit, stand, or lie down for this one. Take a deep breath, relax, and visualize your connection to Mother Earth. You can visualize this however you choose. Perhaps you see white light. Maybe it’s a stream of gold or the green energy of the heart center. Or you might simply feel the energy rather than see it.
Once you feel that energy, consider it a cord that goes from your body to the center of the earth. From there it allows you to open up and release everything you’re ready to let go.
If you’d like to extend your experience even further, imagine another cord reaching from the top of your head and going all the way to the sun. The warm energy from the sun feeds you, warms you, and heals you. It gives you an even deeper connection to yourself, the earth, and the moment.
Grounding not only brings you back to the now but also helps you refresh, de-stress, and rejuvenate your entire being. Any of these methods helps you become more present and more clear. Best of all, they all take only a few minutes!
My suggestion is to check in with yourself and re-ground three times a day, for starters. Try starting your day with your favorite method so that you begin the day with presence and oneness. Around midday, check in with yourself and see how your day has progressed. Finally, at the end of the day, work it into your evening routine to let go of the worries of the day and prepare for a restful night’s sleep.
The more that you practice this, the more awareness you’ll bring to everything that you do. You’ll be able to catch yourself when you feel stress or anxiety and get to the root of it right away. You’ll keep the stress from building up too much and causing serious burnout. And best of all, you’ll be able to bring yourself back to the moment with a lot more ease.
And after all, present moment is the only place where we can actually LIVE. And grounding is the fastest way to get there.
Give these tips a try and let me know how they worked for you! I’d love to hear about any a-ha moments, insights, or experiences you had when you put these into practice.
And of course, if you have any questions, I’d love to answer them through the platforms listed in my profile!
Originally published at www.thevibrantsensitive.com