Unofficially, the year 2020 can be summed up as a dumpster fire. I love how this cute little guy has a smile on his face while traversing flooded waters! Anyway, compound 2020 with all the holiday shenanigans of seeing people, not seeing people, worrying about the future, and staying healthy/safe-you probably feel like you have lost your marbles?
The best and cost-free thing we all can try is grounding ourselves in the moment!
What is grounding yourself?
Basically, it's any process where you reconnect and balance your body, mind, emotions, and energies.
Here are 3 Ways to feel more grounded now!
Box Breathing Method aka Square breathing - This breathing technique can be used by anyone at pretty much any age. It is so effective that Navy SEALs to medical professionals are taught this method of breath work to utilize in times of insurmountable stress.
How to Box Breathe - In quiet place, get in a seated or comfortable position. Then
place your hands in your lap or beside you. Now, focus on your breath.
1st Step - Exhale very slowly through your mouth clearing your lungs as much as
possible. Hold this exhaled state for a slow count of 4.
2nd Step - Take a very slow inhale and fill your lungs with air as much as possible.
Hold this inhaled state for a slow count of 4.
3rd Step - Repeat Step 1.
4th Step- Repeat Step 2, then start over.
Benefits of Box Breathing
- Calms the nervous system responsible for stress (autonomic nervous system)
- Lower your body temp and blood pressure.
- Improves your mood and may help with sleep.
2. Earthing (Literally putting your bare feet to the dirt of the earth or grass)
Did you know that the earth is covered in electrons and walking in dirt or grass with bare
feet can have great physiological benefits? Well, it is TRUE! Significant research has
shown that the simple act of walking barefoot in dirt/grass or some how connected to a
conductive system can influence biochemical and bioelectrical human processes. Also,
there are products you can buy that you can use inside the house when the weather isn't
conducive for that such as an earthing mat. Or, you can buy earthing shoes for winter!
What or How can earthing happen?
- Walk bare foot in grass, dirt, leaves, sand, beach water, or concrete.
- Touch a living tree for a few moments.
- Too cold? Get an earthing mat or earthing shoes!
Benefits of Earthing
- Better sleep
- Blood thinning effect
- Reduced pain, stress, and cortisol
3. Meditate!!!! - Yes, there is research backed data that supports the inherent benefits of meditation! You do not have to be a professional or know a lot about meditation other than, just to be quiet, relax your body into a comfortable position, focus on your breathing, notice all parts of your body, and allow yourself to fully be present in the moment. Over the years I have found that I enjoy guided meditations the most with certain types of voices for about 10-15 minutes max.
How do I meditate?
- Get quiet, anywhere. You can do this in the car, at the store, even in a crowded
- Take as much time as you can do. So, if you can go only 1 minute at a time, it is a start!
It isn't necessary to close your eyes either when doing meditation for super short
periods of time. But, for longer times like 5 minutes or more it is easier to stay
relaxed if you shut your eyes for the entire meditation.
- Use the sound of nature such as birds chirping, water sources, wind sounds, binaural
beats, or guided meditations. Also, you can just use silence or your favorite calming
Benefits of Meditation
- Stress relief
- Increased self-awareness
- Reduced negative feelings/emotions
- Expanded perspective and much more!
Below is my favorite channel on YouTube to follow for all kinds of life changing meditations!!
Hopefully some of these tips will help you as they have me! Survive 2020 and thrive in 2021!!
Sources for this blog:
Strait, J. E., Strait, G. G., McClain, M. B., Casillas, L., Streich, K., Harper, K., & Gomez, J. (2020). Classroom Mindfulness Education Effects on Meditation Frequency, Stress, and Self-Regulation. Teaching of Psychology, 47(2), 162–168. https://doi.org/10.1177/0098628320901386
Chevalier, G., Sinatra, S. T., Oschman, J. L., Sokal, K., & Sokal, P. (2012). Earthing: health implications of reconnecting the human body to the Earth's surface electrons. Journal of environmental and public health, 2012, 291541. https://doi.org/10.1155/2012/291541