What is grounding in therapy and how to reduce anxiety
Grounding in therapy
Grounding is a therapeutic technique that has recently emerged in the field of physical and psychological health whose main objective is to restore people’s health through the reconnection of human beings with the Earth. For this, different exercises are performed through which the person “absorbs the earth” by connecting with it through their bare feet. In psychology, this technique has multiple applications, but above all it is used in anxiety disorders because it helps to connect with the present and paralyze the rumination that fuels anxiety. In this article we will let you know about the grounding in therapy.
What is Grounding in Psychology
The Grounding or Earthing technique means “landing, rooting”. From a scientific point of view, it refers to the positive effect that walking barefoot in direct contact with the earth has on human physiology and psyche.
In the 90’s, several authors, among which Clinton Ober stands out, started different researches to contrast such hypotheses. The positive results indicated that, indeed, having direct contact of our feet with the earth provides a wide variety of benefits in the person’s general state of health. For example, it relieves pain from chronic diseases, decreases stress, improves sleep, strengthens the immune system, reduces inflammation, helps with arthritis, headaches, etc.
From all these researches, several explanations of this technique were carried out to improve people’s physical and psychological health. In psychology, this technique is widely used to combat anxiety because it allows the person affected to cut through the state of confusion and anguish and regain peace by performing different exercises that allow you to return to the present. In the following article we will explain how to forget the past and live in the present.
How to practice the Grounding technique to reduce anxiety
Taking into account the initial meaning of Grounding, the basic and main practice of this technique consists of walking barefoot on solid ground. The steps to follow to do it correctly would be the following:
- Find a quiet natural space where you can practice this technique without interruption.
- Go barefoot .
- While we are still and in contact with the earth, we will begin a gentle deep breath that will allow us to regain lost contact with the earth little by little.
- After a few minutes of deep breathing and awakening our body with contact with the earth, we will begin a smooth and peaceful walk .
- During the tour, we will become aware of how our feet come into contact with the different elements of the earth and how we feel as time goes by, the sounds we hear, the visual details we observe (light, colors, images… .).
From here, the Grounding technique gave way to multiple exercises and specific techniques that help reduce anxiety. Below, we will explain two of them:
“The Three Three”
This exercise consists of closing your eyes and, after an initial deep relaxation, naming the three sounds that you perceive around you. After that, we will slowly open our eyes and name the three colors seen first and, finally, we will describe the three sensations experienced at that same moment.
This simple exercise helps people with anxiety focus their attention on these little instructions and, without realizing it, let go of the mental ruminations that kept them in an unpleasant state of anxiety. In this article you will find some Mental Relaxation Techniques.
This technique consists of promoting the development of the five senses , bearing in mind that when this sensory connection helps us to ground ourselves and return to the present. To carry it out, you must name the first 5 things you saw, touch 4 objects, list 3 sounds you hear, concentrate on two things you smell and, finally, become aware of a taste.
Other valid techniques would be all those that favor personal contact with oneself and with the reality that surrounds us through the use of elements of nature, given their proven beneficial effect on people’s health. For example, dancing in nature, hugging a tree, sitting on the ground and taking deep breaths, walking on different natural surfaces, etc.
Why the Grounding Technique Calms Anxiety
Anxiety takes people away from the present, distressing them with memories of the past or fears about the future. The anxious state focuses the mind on a continuum of negative thoughts that wear down and corner the person. The Grounding technique allows you to return to the present , thus reducing anxiety levels by letting go of irrational thoughts.
When carrying out the suggested indications, the mind of the anxious person must abandon negative thoughts and focus on feeling what he touches, hears, hears, sees, feels, etc. It is not an easy job, as the torrent of thoughts quickly chains the person and paralyzes him.
However, therapeutic accompaniment helps the person to gradually abandon their blocked state and acquire a conscious active role in their life. It is through these small actions that the person breaks the chain of irrational thoughts and, with that, reduces the levels of anxiety.
Benefits of practicing the Grounding technique
The scientific explanation of the benefits of practicing the Grounding technique is based on the fact that the planet Earth is a large electrical network whose characteristics generate an optimal biological environment for living beings and people to restore the inner balance of our physiological systems. In this sense, social advances have led us to cities far from nature, covered in asphalt and on which we must walk with shoes.
All this new vital situation of the human being means an obstacle in its natural way of discharge and natural recharge of the organism, which resulted in an accumulation of organic mismatches that represent a good part of the origin or worsening of many of the current physical and psychological illnesses of our society. society, such as stress, all kinds of inflammatory diseases, psychological and emotional disorders, etc.
For all these reasons, the Grounding technique is a very useful tool to be able to use the innate mechanism of organic restructuring of the human being as a means of recovering and maintaining the necessary health . Ultimately, Grounding reminds us that it is inherent to human beings to be one with nature, to maintain continuous contact with it in order to maintain optimal health.