Making Peace With Your Unwelcome Emotions, Part I: Grounding

Welcome to my blog! I’m beginning this journey with a topic that leads many to seek relief: persistent, challenging, or unwelcome emotions. We all experience them at some point, feelings such as irritation, overwhelm, jealousy, dread, anger, rage, shame, and humiliation. These difficult emotions are often signposts pointing to areas of our lives that need attention. Sometimes, they are symptoms of deep-rooted wounds or traumas that are crying out for healing, and other times, they simply require us to slow down and process what we’re experiencing.

Feeling Your Connection to the Ground

When working with challenging emotions, one of the first questions I ask my clients is whether or not they feel their connection to the ground. To those of you who are unfamiliar with somatic practices, this may sound insignificant or even ridiculous, yet unlike our thoughts; our bodies exist one hundred percent of the time in the present; grounding helps us to come into our bodies and be fully present, where our past and future concerns recede, allowing for greater access to what is. It is from this place that we can begin to make peace with our emotions.

Our culture reveres the mind, and as a whole, our energy is focused higher in the body. Many of us don’t realize we have lost connection with our physicality because we’re so used to tuning out sensations as we keep our focus on our thoughts. However our bodies are not simply appendages of our brains, and when most of our energy is centered upward in our heads an imbalance of the autonomic nervous system is created, producing anxiety and an over-reactive sympathetic nervous system. The sympathetic nervous system is what initiates the fight-flight response, hence one may feel out of control of ones emotions. This upward shift of energy can be heightened by trauma and can eventually lead to depression. Grounding helps to bring awareness back into the body, increasing nervous system regulation and supporting reconnection on all levels of experience.

Examples of Grounding

That may sound complicated, but grounding is not, and what follows are two examples of how to get down and ground. Both can be done either sitting or standing. The first is more kinesthetic and begins with placing your hands on your thighs, pressing inward, bringing awareness to the physicality of your legs. Next, feel your feet making contact with the floor, then the weight of your body and gravity connecting you to the earth. As you sense a connection with the ground, bring awareness to your spine, the back of your legs, the bottom of your feet, and your breath.

The second practice requires your imagination and starts with picturing a cord, rope or energy that begins at the top of your head, travels down through the base of your skull, your neck, through each vertebra to the base of your spine, and then down through whatever surfaces are supporting you into the ground below, continuing through the different layers of soil, rock and minerals deep into the center of the earth where it securely takes root. Some are drawn to an image of an anchor attached to the cord or rope, while others imagine growing strong roots. Again, as you sense a connection with the ground, bring awareness to your spine, the back of your legs, the bottom of your feet, and your breath. There are many variations of these practices: play, get creative and make them your own.

In addition, there are Traditional Chinese Medicine practices I teach my clients, as well as some yoga, meditation, and movement practices that pull energy downward. Whatever helps you to strengthen your connection to this amazing orb we’ve hitching a ride on through the Milky Way is right for you. Over time a practice of grounding will improve your ability to access and feel your emotions, while at the same time bringing a greater sense of safety as you experience what is present in a more embodied way. To feel the breadth and depth of your connection as you draw strength and guidance from your body and the living Earth.

Part II explores acknowledging and allowing our emotions.

Client Testimonials

Journeys of Transformation

Insightful Journey

Anonymous

…I am very much able to recognize what I am experiencing before it overtakes my whole being. I also learned some very important characteristics about myself and, more importantly, how they were affecting my relationships. You are thoughtful and were able to challenge my thinking which helped me grow.

Heartfelt Gratitude

Anonymous

Continued Transformation

Anonymous

I think about what I have learned in your sessions all of the time. I have done very well incorporating orienting and grounding in everyday life and feel much more in control and calm…. Our sessions really meant a lot to me, and I continue to practice what I have learned. Thank you for having such a great impact on me!!

Begin Your Journey Today

Schedule your complimentary 15-minute consultation with a simple call or email. Discover more about individual therapy and transparent fee structures on my dedicated pages.