Do you struggle to cope with the stresses of daily life, trying to grasp onto stability and achieve centeredness but have difficulty succeeding? Anxiety and worry are commonplace fixtures of modern society. In the United States, we seem to be forever rushing from one responsibility or activity to the next. With little space to breathe in between the obligations of life, the world often seems to spin ever faster and out of control. While it may not always be possible to change our duties and commitments, it is important to find inner peace amidst it all. This is why it is important to know how to ground yourself.
Grounding is an invaluable tool including a series of techniques to achieve a calm and focus in your daily life no matter what you might be facing. If you would like to learn what grounding is and how you can use it to reach a greater state of tranquility, you have come to the right place.
What Is Grounding?
A Comprehensive Breakdown
Before you can learn how to ground yourself, it is important to understand what the label grounding refers to and encompasses. In succinct terms, grounding encompasses two different concepts. The first concept involves establishing a complete and total presence in the current moment in terms of both body and mind. The second concept refers to being physically linked to the earth itself. Thus, grounding takes on various forms and functions, from mental exercises and approaches to physical exercises and techniques.
Grounding enables you to stay present and not allow your mind to race with angst despite the demands of the moment, making you calm and collected in even the most trying of times. Learning how to become grounded will ensure that you can remove the muddle of anxious thoughts from your mind, re-energize yourself, sharpen your mental capabilities, and restore your emotional state.
Indications You May Be Ungrounded
The first step in learning how to ground yourself is to recognize that you are ungrounded. There are some key signs and symptoms that will show you need grounding in your life. This is not a sign of poor emotional strength or a negative mental state. Rather, it means that you are overwhelmed and need to draw peace into your life for the sake of your physical health and mental well-being.
If you become easily sidetracked, lost in empty thought, excessively analyze situations, often find yourself wrapped in drama, or frequently struggle with persistent anxiety and worry, you need to experience grounding. If you constantly focus on the material possessions you can attain, are swayed or misled by yourself and others, and constantly worry about how you appear to the outside world, you are ungrounded.
There are actual physical manifestations associated with being ungrounded, which create a host of ailments and illnesses if not treated properly. Often, the struggles and worries of the mind eventually lend themselves to palpable physical issues, making it even more important to learn how to ground yourself. Physical issues that can be an indication you are ungrounded include:
In reality, most individuals are ungrounded in some way, as anxiety, worry, and the physical manifestations they lead to are experienced by everyone at different stages in life. This lack of grounding is at the root of countless personal difficulties, mental struggles, and physical ordeals. Grounding may not solve all these ills, but it can resolve many of them and ease the rest considerably.
Why Grounding Is Important
Heal Your Body
Discovering how to ground yourself is an essential step in healing your body from the negative impacts of consistent worry and anxiety. This kind of distress puts your body into a high-alert mode, increasing inflammation and activating defense mechanisms in your immune system. Your body can become worn out quickly with this cyclical motion of responses, leading to illnesses and other physical conditions.
Stress can negatively affect every area of the human body. Grounding enables you to release some of these toxins created by stress, relaxing your mind and body to achieve a state of lessened inflammation, heightened immunity, and increased blood flow. This will improve your energy levels and thinking patterns, enabling you to meet the demands of the day with increased readiness and alertness.
Heal Your Mind
Knowing how to ground yourself will also enable you to heal your mind. Constant cycles of worry and stress create unhealthy thought patterns that can be difficult to break if consistently fueled. By grounding yourself, whether it be through mental exercises or physical actions, your mood will improve and your stress levels will lower.
Stress and worry cloud your judgment and impede your ability to achieve the continuous flow of peaceful awareness necessary to maintain healthy thought processes. So many struggles of daily life start with the mind. Learning how to ground yourself and manage your mind will reward you in every other area of your life.
How To Ground Yourself
One of the initial aspects of learning how to ground yourself involves a physical connection with the earth and nature. Nature has the ability to induce feelings of peace and tranquility by allowing you to breathe and absorb the healing properties of the grass and soil. Going for a walk outside barefoot or running barefoot is a simple and easy way to connect with the grounding elements of Earth itself.
If you are just learning how to ground yourself, start this new connection with nature in moderation to allow your body time to adjust. Take barefoot walks or runs before 6 pm (if possible) and choose soft or wet areas of grass that allow you to better connect to the earth beneath your feet. Avoid grassy areas sprayed with pesticides or containing litter as this could be toxic when absorbed into your skin.
When physically grounding yourself with nature, it is important to do so in moderation, as an excess could be unhealthy and toxic to your body. If you have preexisting medical conditions or are pregnant, be careful when using electronic conduits to connect to the earth. In these cases, it may be wise to use other techniques we will touch upon and focus on the mental aspects of grounding instead.
Otherwise, you can create a DIY grounding mechanism that reacts with the electromagnetic fields naturally occurring in your body and the surrounding earth. To make this mechanism, you will need an electrical cable, 2 copper clamps, a 3-prong plug, and some electrical tape. The copper clamps should be situated at the bottom of your feet. You may go barefoot or wear shoes. You can also keep the clamps on your waist if you prefer, but the feet serve as a more effective conduit. Be very careful when using this method and avoid it if there is stormy weather, as you will need to be situated at a spot in your house directly over the earth, or at a location outside with plug access.
By affixing this mechanism together with these simple supplies, you can physically ground yourself for periods of time by re-centering your body’s electromagnetic impulses. You may also use the copper clamps like electrodes in a foot bath. Soak your feet in a container filled with sea salt and water, using 1 or 2 of the clamps at the bottom of your feet connected to the electrical cable. The other end of the electrical cable should touch the actual earth to absorb the grounding elements it contains.
Examine Your Thoughts
A very different method of learning how to ground yourself has to do with physically examining and centering your mental processes. If your mind is overcome with worry and anxiety, it can be easy to get caught up in the cycle of stress without being aware of the difficulties it is causing in your everyday mental processes.
The first step in addressing this issue is to recognize its existence. You may not realize that you are being plagued by anxiety, but that doesn't mean it isn't there. Are your thoughts and decisions motivated by fear? Realize that these thoughts are just that, and nothing more. They are emotions and mental identifications that need not have power over you. Once you realize that anxiety is motivating your thoughts and is not a true representation of reality, but rather a manifestation of fear, you can experience freedom from these mental processes. This is grounding.
An age-old method of learning how to ground yourself is to engage in some deep breathing exercises. When you become anxious, your body’s natural reaction is to become rigid and cause erratic breathing. In order for your mind to calm down, your body must first take charge. Begin by breathing deeply all the way from your belly to your nose. Take the air in through your nose and release it through your mouth, drawing out your exhalations. Deep, cleansing breaths alert your body to decompress and calm, which helps to relieve your mental state.
One of the most effective ways to relieve anxiety and learn how to ground yourself is to engage in physical activity. This releases much of the pent-up angst and stress that evolves from constant strenuous thinking and allows you to focus on something productive. If you start to go down a rabbit hole of anxious thoughts, go for a walk, a run or do yoga exercises.
You can even turn on your favorite music and dance to it. This freedom of movement will help you focus on the moment rather than the endless projected scenarios plaguing your mind. In being present, your mind will learn to enjoy that singular state of being and stop jumping ahead to abstract possibilities.
Spend Time With Others
One of the best ways to get outside your own head and learn how to ground yourself is to go spend time with others. It is all too easy to get into a cycle of self-obsession when constantly dealing with anxious thoughts, so placing your attention on someone else is an effective combatant. Whether it be coffee with a friend, going out to the movies with your gal pals, or accepting an invitation to that party you were hesitating to go to, putting yourself out into the world will ground you in a way nothing else will.
Touch Your Crown
There are some key techniques and exercises that only take a few minutes, but provide exceptional opportunities for learning how to ground yourself and calm your anxious thoughts. The first involves taking one hand and touching it against the crown of your head. Hold this position for anywhere from 30 seconds to 1 minute.
If you need to close your eyes to focus on the moment, do so. This simple exercise is an excellent grounding technique that draws your attention to a singularly calm moment. It may seem somewhat random, but it completely works.
Hands To Feet
Another exercise you can do is to touch your hands to your feet. You can sit or stand when using this technique to learn how to ground yourself. The point of this method is to place all your focus on one thing: your feet. In doing so, you center yourself away from a flurry of scattered thoughts and remain completely in the moment. Hold this position for about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
Another easy technique to learn how to ground yourself is to stand perfectly still in momentary meditation. Position your feet parallel to one another, directly beneath your shoulders. Hold your head straight above your body, tuck your chin slightly, and keep your spine upright. You may keep your hands straight at your side or situate them above your navel area.
Slowly shift your weight to your feet while maintaining your stance, focusing all your energy into the ground beneath you. You can hold and repeat for anywhere from 1 to 10 minutes.
Take An Icy Plunge
One of the most effective and basic techniques to learn how to ground yourself is to take a nice, cold shower. This not only stimulates your senses, but enhances your immune function, fights fat, and heightens your mood. Cold alerts dopamine production, so you may feel considerably calmer and happier after a cold shower.
If cold showers are a new phenomenon to you, consider working your way up to one, by standing in cool water for increments of time after your regular shower. Eventually, you will be able to stand the cold water without issue, holding for 30 seconds to 5 minutes, or as desired.
Connect With The Earth
One final technique to learn how to ground yourself involves using your mental processes and the physical earth beneath you to achieve a deeper calm. Go stand outside, preferably in a grassy area free of pesticides or any other toxic elements. Focus first on the ground under your feet and next on your heart, the center of your being. Conceptualize the spirit exuding from your heart and the same power releasing from the Earth’s core.
Use your imagination, likening the two as best you can. Think of energy or light emanating between your heart and that fiery core in the center of Earth, forming an oval ray of continuous energy. Hold this position and meditation sequence for anywhere from 2 to 5 minutes.
Learning how to ground yourself is a multi-faceted process. There is no singular technique that is necessarily better than the rest. Some individuals may prefer meditation approaches to physical techniques. Others may prefer electromagnetic pulses between conduits and the earth to achieve ultimate grounding.
If you do not have the time or the inclination to use actual conduits like clamps to connect with the earth, you can easily use any of the other approaches mentioned to center yourself. Simple things like exercise, walking in nature, taking a cold shower, or getting out into the world and spending time with loved ones and dear friends can be some of the most effective tools in learning how to ground yourself.
The battle of the mind is one of the most difficult ones you can ever wage in life. It is also one area in which you can make the greatest change in a short amount of time. Anxious thoughts are often nothing more than that, and not truly manifestations of reality. Our imaginings of what may or may not be are typically far worse than the reality ever is. Choose instead to let your mind rest and center.
Select the technique or a combination of approaches that work best for you. Taking even a few minutes out of your day to learn how to ground yourself through deep breathing exercises, meditation, or by spontaneously breaking into a dance to the tune of your favorite song can reap endless benefits for your mental and physical state. By easing your stress and releasing the toxicity of your anxiety, you will stay grounded no matter what unexpected challenges life may throw your way.