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Grounding yourself, What is it and how do you?
Grounding yourself, is the process of balancing your physical, emotional, mental and energy state and reconnecting them.
I have over the past month or so been in need of grounding quite often, here are a few things that I have been trying, some do work and some don't work for me, I suppose it's a matter of trial and error.
When is grounding necessary?
Anyone with mental illness at some times run into problems with not being grounded.
When we are not grounded we may feel, lightheaded, tired, disconnected, dazed, confused, shaken, flighty, emotionally unstable, etc.
Following is some tips for grounding yourselves, just remember not every tip works for every person. What works for one might not work for you. Just keep trying different technics or a combination of a few until you find something that works,
Eating...eating is great for grounding, eat healthy things, fruit, vegetables, salads, some protein, legumes, potatoes, eggs, fish, etc. Who doesn't like chocolate, a few pieces of dark chocolate is good for your heart, has an antioxidant in it, plus its taste good.
Other strong tastes,....Curries, chillies, rich spicy foods also has a grounding effect,
Eating has slowing effect on the mind and settling mental states.
A regular Scedule....A regular schedule of sleeping, exercise. By doing something on a regular schedule helps your willpower.
Connect with Nature....Walking barefoot outside, feel the grass under your feet, the coolness of it, the texture of it, sand is great to walk on dig your toes, heels, bury your feet in the sand, gardening, long nature walks, these are all good for grounding yourself.
Baths and Showers,.... Baths and showers can be a powerful grounding element, The water running over your hair, head, down your body is really vey potent as is having a bath, with warm water, bubbles and maybe some scented candles, darkening the room for more grounding.
Scents and Smells....Smells can be really powerful in grounding ourselves, find one that works for you, Lavender is well known for giving a relaxing feeling.
Hard excercise,...When your not sure how to ground yourself, try hard physical excercise, cycling, cardio or running. but do not over do it.
These are a few things that we can try to ground ourselves.
How do you ground yourself?
Your thoughts and grounding techniques are very welcome.
Hi grandy , thanks for the tips.
The healthy foods stuck in my mind and thoroughly agree , just wish l could practice it more.
And teh bare feet, dad use to laugh at me always in bare fet , he could never understand why l'd go around bare feet any chance l could and put up with prickles and stones and stuff , instead of simply putting some shoes back on. Couldn't myself but l think you just helped me see why it was just something l had to do whenever l could.
Stepping out the door grounds me, whether into the sunshine and walk about on the grass or heading out somewhere or a walk late in the night. But if l've been inside too much and my heads becoming too much l crave it and as soon as l step out into it everything starts to clear.
I was the same when I was younger, always barefoot, I loved it. Then as we get older we loose that child in us and forget about the simple things, that do feel good and can ground us..
When I went to the beach the sand felt like a foot massage if you buried them in the sand and twisted them around..
Healthy food, yes when we eat all our senses are being used, taste, smell feel, sight, even hearing if we're eating something crunchy.
I still go out back and stand in the rain it really can be so relaxing and grounding.
What a great idea for a thread; well done! 🙂
I'd like to start my response with a quote from you;
'Anyone with mental illness at some times run into problems with not being grounded.
When we are not grounded we may feel, lightheaded, tired, disconnected, dazed, confused, shaken, flighty, emotionally unstable, etc'
The symptoms you describe sound just like having low blood sugar. If all these symptoms hit often, it might be wise to get fasting blood sugar levels done. To treat the situation in the moment, try to eat natural foods that work slowly thru the digestive system...banana is a great one.
The best way to avoid low blood sugar is to eat regularly every few hrs. It doesn't have to be huge meals either. A combination of protein, complex carbs, fibre and fat covers a balanced choice.
A smoothie with natural Greek yogurt, a banana, a little slice of avo, some walnuts and sunflower seeds, a teaspoon of magnesium powder (heart and brain) and Essential Greens powder blended with sparkling mineral water makes a great snack or even breakfast on the go. It keeps for a couple of days. I add Kale or celery sometimes if I don't have any Essential Greens powder.
While I make it, I focus on what I'm doing to ground myself with each step. By the time I get to drink it, I'm in the zone. Then I'm ready to face the day/afternoon/evening.
Symptoms you give also describe serious dissociation from anxiety. Grounding is absolutely great for this as you say. I like to flick my hands outwards as if there's gum stuck on them; the harder the better. I can actually feel energy running down my arms and out my hands, and, it feels good! (I think it has to do with increasing blood flow) Men might like to shadow box?
If you do this with your feet as well by stamping on the ground, it really reinforces being heavy and stuck to the ground. I think all this brings blood to the body carrying the goodness within it to any cells in distress.
Please be careful with heavy weights, intense gym workouts or long runs. This increases adrenaline output and can trigger anxiety. Those suffering with severe anxiety should stick to short medium/low workouts and gradually work up to higher levels always assessing if anxiety's present.
Food IS great to ground! The whole experience is..
Sorry for the long diatribe; it all just popped into my head as I wrote.
Thank you for your your great post.
The smoothie sound yummy and by the time everything is gathered, prepared and then mixed together I can see how that alone would ground you, then sitting down to drink and saviour the taste while all ready being grounded is a delicious reward in itself.
I like your idea of flicking your hands to get grounded and stamping your feet as well and it works for you, I think we need to find what works best for the individual person. Thank you for sharing that with us all as there are a lot of different grounding technics that works that we are unaware of and sharing what work for you might help someone else.
Food, in my opinion is really good for grounding oneself, the whole process of preparation (distraction) and cooking (the odours). anticipation (hungry and looking forwards to it) and eating it (the flavours) slowly and mindfully is my favourite grounding tool to try to settle me enough for the evening and for some relaxing meditation.
Meditation is another good way grounding.
I agree with Sara, please do not over do hard exercise. Start gently then slowly build yourself up.
What do you do to ground yourself? Please share ( only if you want to). as your grounding techniques could be one that can also help someone reading .
Our senses can be powerful emotional triggers. A certain smell can make you feel calmer, a soothing touch can help us feel safe and calm, The right music can energise us, fill us with peace and sometimes move us to tears, Even though we've had all these experiences we never think to consciously harness the power of our senses to help ourselves to feel better, we can do this by making ourselves A GROUNDING BOX.
A grounding box box is simply a box of things that help us when we are in need them. If we have things gathered in one place before we use them, we don't have to worry about gathering them when we need grounding. It can be a simple box, that we fill with some things to ground us.
A simple box could be a old shoe box, Why not spend some time decorating it, you might want to paint it, or add some cut outs, of your favourite things, butterflies, frogs, rainbows, glitter glue.
Inside our grounding box we can things that will use our 5 senses, sight, touch,, sound, smell, taste.
Some things we can put into our grounding box could be.
Touch....Feathers, smooth stones, stress ball, play doh, plasticine, colouring book, journal, pens and pencils.
Sound.....Your favourite CD, or a meditation tape, headphones, a list of your favourite YouTube clips,
Taste....Some really sour lollies (warheads are good), strong peppermint lollies, chips, chocolate, snack pack of biscuits, anything that you like eating.
Smell....A candle, essential oils, eucalyptus leaves, lavender oil, eucalyptus oil. your favourite perfume or aftershave.
Sight....A photo of your family or friends, a postcard, book, magazine, travel brochures, soduku, puzzle book.
These are just examples of what you could place into your grounding box. You can at anytime you want to add some new items to it, take some out, replace them,
I would also recommend making a grounding box to-go. This is essentially a smaller version of the same thing, but made travel size, I would recommend a pair of earplugs, to deaden high noise ares, so there handy if you find yourself in a situation that the noises are causing you anxiety. The go-to grounding box/packet/satchel you make, should be small enough to fit in your handbag for when you are out and about, as well as being small enough to fit into your glovebox or at least small enough to be stashed into your car for travelling.
Has anyone got a grounding box, if so what items have you got in yours?
Thank you so much for the post. I didn't really know a lot about grounding, but so many of the tips were things I was already doing whenever I was struggling. I'll definitely try the others you have suggested, I really like the idea of a grounding box.
All the best wishes 🙂
Hey Just Sara
I really like the smoothie idea and focusing on each step. I think I'll try it in the morning tomorrow 🙂
And the tip with flicking your hands out is great. I tried it and it really helped - actually felt quite nice, thank you.
All the best wishes 🙂
Hello Green Tea & Honey,
Thank you for popping in and having a read, I'm pleased you like the idea of a grounding box..
It's a simple box filled with what works for you when you need grounding, it saves you from running around looking for things that work, as now they are all handy in one spot. Items can be changed, taken out, or replaced, when you feel you need something different.
Hi everyone, posters and readers,
Do you have a unique, different way of grounding yourself that could be beneficial to other posters or readers, please share your ideas or thoughts. They could help someone to get grounded.
I thought I would put a few grounding techniques for grounding when needed.
As the name implies, grounding is a particular way of coping that is designed to "ground" you in the present moment. In doing so, you can retain your connection with the present moment and reduce the likelihood that you slip into a flashback or dissociation. In this way, grounding may be considered to be very similar to mindfulness.
To ground, you want to use the five senses (sound, touch, smell, taste, and sight). To connect with the here and now, you want to do something that will bring all your attention to the present moment. A couple of grounding techniques are described below.
Sound..... Turn on loud music..
Loud, Bassy music will be hard to ignore. And as a result, your attention will be directed to that noise, bringing you into the present moment.
Touch..... Grip a piece of ice...
If you notice that you are slipping into a flashback or a dissociative state, hold onto a piece of ice. It will be difficult to direct your attention away from the extreme coldness of the ice, forcing you to stay in touch with the present moment
Smell.....Sniff some strong peppermint,or Lavender...
When you smell something strong, it is very hard to focus on anything else. In this way, smelling something strong, like peppmint can bring you into the present moment, hopefully slowing down or stopping altogether a flashback or an episode of dissociation.
Taste: Bite into a lemon.....
The sourness of a lemon and the strong sensation it produces in your mouth when you bite into it can force you to stay in the present moment.
Sight: Make a mental list of everything around you
Connect with the present moment by listing everything around you. Identify all the colors you see. Count all the ornaments, floor tiles, or furniture.
Make a list off all the noises you hear. Taking an inventory of your immediate environment can directly connect you with the present moment.
Your thoughts are welcome.