With hectic schedules and endless responsibilities, sometimes it can feel as though we’re coasting through our days, hardly getting through the week just so we can take on the next. During these mile-a-minute times, when we attempt to pause, take in everything around us, and assess it all, we may experience a sensation that feels as if we’re out of our bodies, almost as if we’re floating.
In psychology, this phenomenon is known as dissociating, meaning we detach ourselves from our surroundings, or even our true selves and emotions. Dissociation can be quite severe, where the individual may no longer be in touch with reality. But today, we’re talking about the more mild, manageable detachment that happens every so often when we’re in particular periods of stress—and how we can deal with it.
Fortunately, no matter our circumstance, the Earth is always there to help put us back in the present moment. Used by ancient healers and shamans, grounding is the practice of using earth’s energy to re-balance our mind and bodies, and to clear unwanted, or ‘bad,’ energy.
The list of grounding exercises and techniques is endless. However, here are a few to keep in your back pocket to quickly bring you back down to Earth the next time you feel like you’re ‘floating.’
Walk barefoot through the grass. As you take each step, make a mental note of how the ground feels beneath your feet. Is the grass wet and dewy? Is the dirt dry and hot, or moist and cool? Step around slowly, until you feel present, and in the moment.
Press your thumb into the ground. Crouching down with your knees slightly bent, press your right thumb firmly into the ground. Raise your left arm overhead, with that thumb turned up. Imagine the earth is absorbing your negative energy through your right thumb, and replenishing you with positive, loving energy through your thumb above. Breathe as the energy flows through you. (And don’t worry about overwhelming the Earth with your ‘bad’ energy—she can handle it!)
Stand like a superhero. Some people call it the ‘Superman pose.’ Firmly plant your feet into the ground, a bit wider than hip-distance. Place your hands on your hips, and lean your pelvis forward ever so slightly. Stand tall and poised. Think of your legs as being rooted to the Earth, and remember that it’s always there for you: strong, powerful, alive, and constant.
Pictured: Justine wears our fragrance bracelets near the gorgeous Point Dume, California.