Grounding Rituals To Create Calm Amidst Chaos
If you’re a human in this day and age, your nervous system is going through some serious upgrades.
Not only have we completely shocked our fleshy, animal bodies with wifi, cities, notifications and a disconnect to the cyclic rhythms of nature, but living in a chronic state of stress is the norm. I don’t know about you, but I don’t dig that buzzy, frenetic feeling I get when I’ve been online, indoors or on the move too long and prioritise taking care of my sweet body as I dance through this modern world.
If you’re a sufferer of anxiety, insomnia, overwhelm or just generally feel like your feet aren’t quite on the ground, below are some of my fav ways to ground back in to my body and on this earth after hanging about up in the ethers, to create calm amidst the chaos.
*disclaimer: obvs, I’m not a doctor, and encourage you to tap in to your own wisdom as to what practices feel right for YOUR body and being.
Hands on heart
This simple gesture of making contact between your hand and your heart attunes you to the present moment. By feeling the sensation of your heart beating, you have an anchor point to the RIGHT NOW. There is also a tender softening that occurs when we offer ourselves touch — often we crave the hug of another in times of emotional overwhelm to calm us down (we are all essentially big kids in adult meatsuits wanting a hug from our mother) and so as integrated adults, we can give this to ourselves and take responsibility for our capacity to change our state.
I’ve been on public transport, long haul flights, facilitating ceremony at the front of a room, closing a yoga class, being interviewed for podcasts, in stressful situations, on airport terminal floors and so many other places that stretch me to my edge where this practice has brought me back to myself, when I could have easily followed the rabbit down the hole (the rabbit is a fearful though, the hole is symbolic of.. well, the hole of anxiety or overwhelm. You get me).
A great ritual for anywhere, anytime: hand on heart. Close your eyes. 6 deep breaths.
A total recalibration of your stress response and calming your nervous system, creating safety to be in your body and feel your present emotional experience rather than suppressing it.
Earth elements = ultimate grounding
Mother Nature gave us all we could ever need to stay grounded in the physical. Here’s a few things I do that create a sense of grounded calm if I’m ever all up in my head, stuck in stress or feel an episode of anxiety or insomnia coming on:
a few minutes of bare feet on the earth. Grass, soil, sand, whatever you have to access will work! There is so much research proving the effects of this act, but if you’re like me, you don’t need the logic of research to prove that Mother Nature had it right.
carrying essential oils specifically chosen to anchor ‘calm’. My favourites are: cedar-wood, lavender, vetiver and the doTerra CONSOLE blend has seen me through some intense times! Whip ‘em out when you’re buckling up for a flight, hopping in to bed or anytime you need some safety for your soul and inhale the scent straight from the bottle or drop in to your palms.
clearing spaces using smoke. You know that feeling of being in a room or environment that just feels a bit.. off? Yeah, that vibe is not conducive to a calm system if you’re feeling the heebie-jeebies of a space. It’s a ritual of mine to clear whatever space I’m sleeping in with palo santo (or sage, or any other clearing smoke you align with) when I unpack to a new place, to create a ‘blank slate’ of sorts, energetically. Smoke has been used for eons for shifting energy and the earthy, woody scent feels oh so grounding.
OK, that was a little sassy, but for reals: are you actually meditating, or just pretending to yourself that you are? Reading books that tell you to, but not doing it? You know the research doesn’t lie. It’s a game changer, and imperative (in my humble opinion) to hit the pause button on the fast paced monkey mind. Meditation gives us a place to create space between the inner ‘crazy’ and the Truth Of Who We Really Are — so it’s not so much about conquering your thoughts or even changing them, but shifting in to a role of observing them.
Implementing a DAILY PRACTICE will work for you in a myriad of ways, rewiring your brain and nervous system for a calmer way of Being. Change on this level (SUSTAINABLE, not the quick fix) takes time as the body needs to play ‘catch up’ — so shifting our physiology and brain chemistry through meditation is not just an in the moment payoff, but a lasting ripple effect to cultivate calmness as a new standard.
I find that just a few minutes a day will spark this change on a deep, cellular level. I offer a guided audio that you can download below which is only 7 minutes long but gives a process that will lead you to crawl back in to your body when things get a bit whirly.
Exhale busy, inhale bliss…