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Mindful techniques - Grounding 101

You've probably heard of the term 'grounding' before - grounding, grounded, groundedness, ground, etc. But what does it actually mean?

One of my favourite authors, Dr. Patrizia Collard, sums this principle up perfectly, referring to 'groundedness' as "the feeling of security when we are fully present in our body." So, why is it important?

All of us go about our days with our 101 things to do, and between work, family, commitments, health, self-care, education, and so forth, it can get super overwhelming trying to juggle all of those things. Often, there are just not enough hours in the day, and most of the time something has to give, often being our own well-being at the expense of keeping everyone else happy. It can become easy to lose our mental focus and to allow our emotions to take over.

Grounding ourselves helps us to stay present in the moment, and allows us to regain control over those flighty, busy or stressful obstacles that pop up during the day. It is a great technique to help in times of stress and anxiety, and allows us to refocus and calm the mind by redirecting energy from your head or mind to your body. We can't always control our surroundings, but we can certainly control ourselves! 

So, HOW does one practice grounding themselves?

Here are 3 simple things you can do right now to help calm and ground yourself.

1. Unleash your inner Earth Child.

I'm starting with this one because it is my favourite!

If you are able, get up and get outside. Take off shoes, and walk on the grass. Feel the earth beneath your feet. Dig in the dirt with your hands. If you have a garden, tend to it for a bit. Use your senses to really immerse yourself into this experience - what can you smell? what can you hear? How does the earth feel beneath your feet? What is the air temperature like? Take a moment to sit or stand quietly and enjoy the moment. If you are a visualising type of person, imagine roots growing out of the soles of your feet, anchoring you to the earth. Stay out as little or as long as you like, and feel that connection recharging your core and dissolving any excess stress.

2. Breathe with intent.

At the risk of stating the obvious, I will just say that breathing is something we tend to not think about all that often. Yet, there is such power that comes with drawing our attention to our breathing, especially when we are feeling stressed out or upset. There are a lot of different ways to use breathing to ground and centre, but I will quickly share one of my faves:

Take a moment to sit or stand comfortably and close your eyes. Take a deep breath in, hold it, then slowly breathe out. As you breathe out, really empty your lungs. With your next breath in, tense your whole body - arms, face, legs, butt cheeks, big toe, as many things as you can! Hold it for as long as you can, squeezing as tight as you can, then as you slowly exhale relax your whole body. Feel every part of your body relax, especially in your face (just FYI, it is amazing how much we subconciously clench our jaw!). Do this as little or as many times as you like, there is no right or wrong here! Take a moment to enjoy that feeling of relaxation, and then resume your day as normal.

3. Hydrate!

Yes, yes, I know you've heard it all before, but water has an amazing ability to calm, cleanse and heal, as well as, you know, keep us alive.

Sip it during the day, either through a water bottle, glass, cup of tea, or however else suits you. How does it taste? What is the temperature like? How does it make me feel? 

In addition to this, mist or splash a little water on your face. Feel the temperature of the water on your skin. Feel the softness of the towel as you pat your face dry. For the visual folk among you, you could even incorporate a visualisation in doing this. Maybe the water is washing away those grimy stresses clogging you mental or emotional flow? Perhaps the coolness of the water is soothing and replenishing your skin? However you see it, use this amazing gift to recharge, replenish and nourish. 

4. Use Crystals

If you are a fellow crystal enthusiast, or would like to incorporate some crystal energies into your life, gemstones with earthy tones tend to resonate with this grounding type energy. Some examples include hematite, agate, jasper, bronzite, and black tourmaline. Of course, this may vary from person to person, but as a general rule, these are a great place to start. Wear them as jewellery, pop a tumbled stone into your water bottle, carry a stone in your pocket, whatever suits you! 

Take a break, take a breath, take control.

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