Updated: Aug 16
You may be thinking “Grounding is a mindfulness practice? What am I, a lightning rod?” In the TLDR version: yep, that is exactly what we are, a lightning rod. For the longer version, have a seat and get comfy, as we get rooted into the next piece in the “Practice of Mindfulness’ series which is all about the act of anchoring and what it entails.
By my own definition, grounding is the process of finding or creating an anchorpoint for ourselves. It is about finding our centre and connecting to that centre whenever we feel off kilter, whenever we need to find who we truly are at our very core. To be grounded is to be balanced, to be rooted, to be sure of our resolve. We can use grounding to help us create a strong, stable foundation for ourselves, from which we can grow, expand and prosper. The act of anchoring helps us feel more tethered, more secure and it can give us the sturdiness of confidence.
We can use grounding to help us shift into a more harmonic state. Grounding is hugely Earth-centric. In fact, in the more traditional sense of the meaning and methodology of grounding, it is described as a way to connect to Earth. To create a connection between an individual and the Earth: a connection said individual may use to help them quite literally recharge, as an energy transference occurs between the self and the Earth when connected. If we are a mobile phone (which contains the battery), then Earth is the charging port and grounding is the charging cable. As we recharge through this connection, we rebalance and we find our centre again.
How it works – in a simple way – is that we take the negatively accumulated energies (“charge”) and direct them into the Earth, where they become neutralized, transmuted into positive energies (“charge”) and sent back up to us. Us humans are very much walking lightning rods, in that we are constantly receiving and sending energies to and from one another, whether we are aware of it or not. Depending on what we put out or pick up, will result in how we feel (negative or positive), and therefore determines whether or not we need to ground. As I’m sure you recall from school science lessons, lightning rods attract negative energy, collect it and then direct it into the Earth where it gets neutralized (grounded, hence grounding wires etc). Same principle applies to us humans.
Now just to be crystal clear, I am not saying we humans only attract negative energy. Of course not. We attract both. The biggest difference lies in our own energetic output and what we want to receive back. If we put out ‘good vibes’, those will be returned to us. Same for ‘bad vibes’. This is karma on the most basic of levels (or Newton’s 3rd law if you prefer the science version of it. 3rd Law = for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction). This is where mindset comes into play: a more positive mindset will require less of a need for grounding as positive energy is much less volatile than negative energy.
Mindset isn’t the only factor though. Whilst a positive mindset is greatly beneficial in reducing the need for grounding, it is still important to ground for a few other purposes such as coming back to our core self, the very essence of what makes ourselves our very self. It is also important for creating a bond between us and Earth, especially for those of us who engage with spirituality because Earth is our home. Also, as I mentioned before, we humans constantly emit and receive energy – both positive and negative – and we do this unconsciously the majority of the time. Because we are such beacons for energy, even walking past another person will create a transference of energy regardless of whether you know them or not. This means that even the most positively-minded person will still need to ground every so often because it helps us clear out all the toxins we acquire throughout day to day life. If you are more of an empath, grounding work is highly crucial as you pick up much more energy than others even when you are well-protected.
Grounding is often used alongside other mindfulness practices such as visualization, meditation, embodiment, chanting and mantra work, yoga and more. I personally view it as one of the fundamental factors of mindfulness because of the power it holds in purifying our energetic field as well as the ability it has to help us create a soft and sturdy foundation for us – our very own container from which we can grow. It truly is a tether: it prevents us from floating off into oblivion, falling deep down a rabbithole or losing our bearings in a maze. The practice of grounding is great for guiding us back to our core, the very essence of who we are. It helps us discover what makes us, us. And because we are continually evolving as people, our essence can evolve too…yet another reason why grounding ought to be a fairly regular practice. It brings us back to our roots, our core structure. And if a root dies (a part of us does not exist anymore), we can cut it off and let it go to make space for a new root to grow (bring in a new part of us).
How can we get grounded? As with many mindfulness practices, there is no one answer, rather, there are many. The easiest way is to find a piece of bare earth or grass and walk on it with your bare feet. Standing with your bare feet or placing your hands on the earth work just as well too. Obviously this is not always possible considering weather, seasons and geographical locations. But where you can, begin with that.
Other ways to ground include:
Hugging a tree/plant (no I am not kidding, do what the hippies do!)
Tending to your houseplants by repotting, watering, touching the soil with your bare hands etc)
Holding anything natural, be it a rock, crystal*, pebble, stone, shell, branch/twig or leaf
Purchasing a grounding mat
Buying a grounding sheet for your bed
Meditating under/next to a tree
Partaking in a grounding visualization
Meditate with crystals*
Practicing yoga flows
Engaging in relaxing breathwork techniques
*Use black, brown or red crystals for grounding. Examples include but are not limited to: Smoky Quartz, Black Tourmaline, Obsidian, Brown Agate, Red Jasper, Almandine Garnet, Onyx, Shungite and Tiger’s Eye.
Grounding is superb for helping with:
Returning to a balanced state
Creating stability within our life
Generating an anchor point to act as a tether
Recharging and recollecting our energy
Letting go of stressors and negativity
Coming back to our core essence and using it as the basis from which we build ourself up
Considering the efficacy and value of grounding, it is a practice that should be harnessed fairly regularly. I ground myself as often as I need (pretty much daily) so that I am able to remain in alignment. Plus, as a strong empath, it is really important that I do so because I pick up on energy extremely easily, and it can cause too much interference with my life if I do not take the effort to remove it. A lot of our stresses and anxieties do not even originate with us, but are picked up throughout our day to day lives. In reality, it is something to do on a daily basis – even just 5 minutes a day can bring about a great shift in stability.
Seeing as all of us are currently living in a high-stress and uncertain environment, it stands to reason that grounding is something we can all benefit from. The best thing about it is that it is extremely affordable (can I get a hallelujah?) as most of the practices are free. If you did want to buy certain grounding tools to embellish your practice, you’ll be pleased to know they are not insanely expensive and are often a one-time cost. For more information on tools, please visit my blog post where I have gone into greater depth about mindfulness tools and have also linked several stores from which to purchase tools from (not sponsored or affiliated in any way).
Hope you enjoyed the read. If there is anything you would like to add or share, please share your response in the comments section below! I look forward to hearing from you. Furthermore, please follow us on our Instagram (@myeireneapp) and Pinterest (MyEirene App) pages Until next time, namaste. Jamila, Founder of MyEirene Ltd.