Getting Grounded Through Movement

Dance In Nature

In order to live a “centered” life, it is important that you stay “grounded.” When you are not grounded, your mind starts to play tricks on you because you are unable to hear the wisdom of Nature speaking to you. As a result, you lapse into anxiety, worry, stress and illness.

You know you’re becoming ungrounded when you fall out of touch with reality and start to experience some or all of the following: You exaggerate your problems and/or fret over imagined things; you become an adrenaline junkie addicted to your own worries; you feel out of sorts, neglected, useless, insecure, tired; you repeat yourself over and over for no reason; you feel “scattered” as if your energy and/or attention is being pulled in fifty different directions all at once; you can’t focus or concentrate; or you spend a great deal of energy accomplishing very little. Trust me, I know. We all do this. When I start to notice that I have become uncentered, I ask myself, “Have I been too much in my own head today?”

The best way to recover your sense of grounding is to simply get out of your own head and one of the best ways to do that is through some vigorous physical activity. Take a few moments to unplug from the virtual world, turn off your computer, put down the cell phone, ipod, etc. etc. and just move! For me, two activities have always served me well in getting outside of my own head: dance and walks/hikes in Nature. Or even better, dance in Nature.

Dancing is a great activity because it’s enjoyable and it forces your focus outside of your own thoughts beyond the immediate. It brings us into the Present. And spending time in Nature is a great way to reset your mental button to a state of calm if you can allow yourself to “be” with Nature and not your own inner chatter. Both of these activities are wonderful ways to activate “grounding.” Yoga is a great way to bring your energies back into focus after you have released some of that blocked energy through vigorous movement. Yoga helps calm the mind and the body and helps you get centered again.

Grounding gets your energy flowing in one direction and keeps you from getting in your own way. The method I use in teaching dance is a “suggestion” of movement. There is no “right” way, only ways that others have preferred over time. If you can release yourself from judgement  and the notion of not “doing it right,” dance is a great way to get in tune with your body wisdom. “Listen” to what your body is telling you.

Shifting your energy from the mental state to a physical one can also revive your creativity, especially if you’re feeling “stuck.” Many, many times when I was stuck on a paper, project or poem, simply dancing around my living room or taking a brisk walk outside for 20 mins rebooted my creativity and I was able to return with fresh eyes and a new focus. Conversely, when I’ve been struggling to create a choreography, it has often been because I was “thinking” it over too much and not just moving with the music naturally.

Grounding and engaging in physical activity is also an instant way to relieve yourself from obsession and worry. Whenever you feel yourself overwhelmed by worry or obsessions, get yourself to a dance class, the gym, throw some hoops, etc. asap or better yet, go outside and walk it off. If walking doesn’t stop the thoughts, run! You’d be amazed at how quickly getting a little physical exercise can knock your head out of thinking things to death, and it really can think itself to death. Worry and stress attribute to numerous health problems, so don’t let the “little mind” take over and keep you from knowing your “higher mind.” A little dancing, walking, hiking, jogging, or whatever physical activity speaks to you will help you get grounded and remove a great deal of stress and worry.

There are many other things that can aid you in a stress free life like enough rest, a healthy diet, a calm state of mind, but when you are trapped in an immediate attack from your own inner worries, sometimes working it off is the most immediate cure.