Updated: Jul 2, 2021
During times of stress and overwhelm, what techniques do you use to help calm the nerves and steady the emotions that are whirling around inside your head?
Exercise and meditation are both wonderful tools for the body and mind, however when you combine them together, you are activating your emotions in a positive way while also enhancing brain activity. It's like super-charging your body without needing that shot of caffeine in the morning to get you moving.
Studies have shown that incorporating both exercise and meditation as part of your regular routine significantly improves our mood and anxiety levels.
My type of exercise is walking every day. I don't pound it out at the gym, but I am consistent with a 30 - 45 min walk each morning. My meditation styles differ depending on what I am drawn to that day. If you struggle with meditation, an easy way to get started is to ground yourself before you start your day.
This grounding technique gets you to use all your five senses to help get you back to the present and be anchored in your body.
Sit comfortably in a chair or go outside and stand barefoot on the grass. I like to use essential oils with grounding and meditation as it helps to centre my focus. A great oil to use would be Lavender or doTERRA's Balance blend. Put a few drops in your hands and make a scent tent. Close your eyes and inhale through your nose for a count of 5 and then out through your mouth for a count of 5. Repeat this 5 times.
Now open your eyes and look around you. Say out loud to yourself:
5 – things you can see (look within the room and out the window if you are inside)
4 – things you can feel (it could be the softness of your skin, the material on your chair, run your hands through your hair, what does it feel like?)
3 – things you can hear (things like traffic noise, children playing or birds outside).
2 – things you can smell (hopefully nothing awful)
1 – thing you can taste (nuts are a great grounding food, so it might be a good idea to keep a handful nearby in case you are doing this exercise). When you taste whatever it is that you have chosen, take a small bite and let it swill around your mouth for a couple of seconds, really savouring the flavour.
Take a deep breath to end.
You should now feel calmer and more in tune with your body.
Grounding brings us back into our body instead of living in our head as this can happen when we are feeling anxious or stressed. Your body is a temple and you need to take care of every aspect of it.
Give this technique a go. Yes you may feel silly to start off with, but you will be pleasantly surprised at the results you get.