22nd April 2021
There are times in life when everyone becomes un-grounded. It usually happens when we feel stressed and our bodies get stuck in that sympathetic nervous system response of ‘fight or flight’ and suddenly, before you know it, you feel off balance, out of kilter, off colour, out of sorts, unsettled, grumpy, intolerant crabby, impatient, couldn’t care less. Whatever it may be, you feel uneasy and not quite right.
Whatever the reason and whatever our reaction, we often don’t recognise that we’ve lost our footing, our peacefully centred self, until we’ve shouted at someone or something or even at ourselves and all of a sudden there’s a light bulb moment where we now recognise that something is not quite right within our normal sense of self.Being grounded is undoubtedly the answer and more essential to our well-being than ever, especially during these times of pandemic when lockdown has meant that our freedom is also curtailed. Whether it’s a physical, mental or emotional construct, many of us are lost without our usual feel-good routines to follow or when we feel pushed to the limit as our socially acceptable personal boundaries seem to have shrunk to the claustrophobic limit. Some people may respond by panicking, some get depressed, yet others get angry.
Whichever negative way in which we react to any of our perceived adversities, we need to recognise the reaction sooner rather than later in order to deal with it, if for no other reason than for our own good health.
The longer the body stays in the stressed-out fight or flight mode, the longer our insides are getting screwed up. In the sympathetic nervous mode, our hyper tense bodies act as though they are on the very edge of a cliff preparing to jump in order to survive. As a result, we don’t digest properly, our organs don’t function as they normally should, and the excess adrenaline eventually feeds into our minds and stops us thinking rationally. Unless we reverse the stress and get back to a parasympathetic nervous system state, we’re going to end up getting sick or, in extremely prolonged cases, worse than irreparably ill. Whichever way we cut it, it’s going to hurt. And it’ going to hurt a lot for a long time.
That is, of course, unless we get ourselves re-grounded. It can be a really simple, quick and easy thing to do. If we make the time to do it.
All we need to do is go outside and breathe. Get your two feet on the bare earth outdoors and smell that fresh air. Take five deep breaths, breathing in through the nose and out through the mouth and, as you stand there in the street or your garden, on your doorstep or in a field, slowly and easily start to pay attention to all that is around you. As you breathe deeply, take the time to look at the newly formed buds on the trees or watch the cautious sparrow drinking from the birdbath.
Stand there and breathe, inhaling the wonderful scents of spring on the air and admire the courting butterfly pair, teasing and dancing, happy and care-free as they flutter on by. If you live in an apartment and legitimately can’t easily get to the outdoors, open the window and stick your head out to reconnect with the elements. The easier it is for us to reconnect with the elements of air, water, earth and sun, the quicker we can feel more grounded. Just be part of it and breathe it in. This is your healing food, your life on drip in the air.
If you do manage to get to the real outdoors and feel inclined to do so, try laying down on the earth and stare up at the heavens as the clouds gently skip past or steamily scud on by. Continue to breathe deeply, slowly and restfully, and take a few minutes to feel the breeze tickling your face or the warmth of the sun as it caresses your arms. Close your eyes and breathe deeply, can you hear the distant cuckoo calling out a new fate? Or do you hear the squabble of sparrows or thee tittle tattle of blue tits? Maybe even the sweetest of serenades from our dear friend the robin or rogue running blackbird? If you daringly choose to do this after dark, as you are laid out on the earth, feel yourself tied and connected to both it and also to your distant cousins, the sparkling stars, who litter your jet black skies with gold way above you, night after night after night.
It need only take a few minutes to reconnect ourselves with nature: our true abode, our bestest place of loving rest and recovery. Laying down or walking barefoot is how we ground ourselves most quickly.
Did you know that the mere act of coming into physical contact with the ground is scientifically proven to ground us?
“The human body, when connected to the ground, creates a closed circuit for energy transfer. The earth literally supplies you with electrons to neutralize your charge…. the Earth’s surface is “the ‘battery’ for all planetary life.”
In a nutshell, we are overrun with positive ions and the negative ions of the earth re-balance us. Instantly. That’s why being in nature makes us feel so, so very GOOD.
All it takes is 5 to 10 minutes a day to start to feel really grounded, really good, and really healthy. Some people can afford to reconnect with nature longer and many of the benefits of forest-bathing (being in nature) will attest that spending 4 hours a month is all you need. (Please bear in mind that we’re all different.) and yet, some people will say all too wearily that they don’t have the time or energy to even step out the front door.
But there’s the thing. If you’re one of those people who feel as though you are losing your grip on reality, feel totally wiped out, crabbed out and fed up, can you really argue that you don’t have the time to spend 5 or 10 minutes in nature to feed yourself the proven cure?
Awareness and consciousness are everything.
Be aware of what is happening to you and how you feel. Be conscious of what your gut instinct is saying to you and don’t lie to yourself. Don’t pretend you can’t hear or that you’re making it all up.
Awareness and consciousness are everything.
And you achieve these – and your bliss - when you are grounded.
Go then and breathe. Go get grounded. Go find your bliss.
If you really want it, it’s there for the taking. Just give yourself permission to be bothered to take the time.