This is a list of emails and instagram comments which we received when asking many different folks for their many different grounding techniques when overwhelmed with thoughts or feelings. If one doesn't work try another! Some are more funnerer to bring you back to the present, some are boring, different strokes and many different folks.
Thanks to all the bpb amigos for contributing, it's good to know we all have our ways to manage the seemingly unmanageable.
clairetracey_ 1. If it’s so bad you can’t leave the house - Create a grounding playlist for yourself to listen to. Choose songs that provoke a positive mindset. Create this well in advance and have it in your “toolbox” whenever you need to use it. Have this on in the background while you do something creative with your hands eg art, draw, poetry etc It’ll help you come back in the moment by physically doing something with your body and your essentially brainwashing your mind through the lyrics to break the anxious thought patterns going on inside!
2. If your anxiety allows you to leave the house then get out in nature straight away. Go for a walk, rain, hail or snow. The result is savage especially when combined with a grounding music playlist to get lost into
3. If you really want to break free I’ve found running helps, it’s great to transmute that anxious energy into something productive. Anxiety can come on fast and it can be hard to focus. Instead of trying to calm the anxiety put it to good use it. Match it with the speed of running and it should work it’s way out of the body and mind. Plus you’ll be doing a great service to the body of getting fit!
cathzer if your mind is racing and your struggling to control your thoughts, take a HUGE breathe in and hold for 10 seconds... count slow to 10... by the time you'll get to 10 the thought should be gone because you're not concentrating on breathing 🙌🏼
therealruairi 54321 grounding technique. List 5 - things you see. 4 things you can touch. 3 things you can hear. 2 things you smell. 1 thing you can taste. Repeat as necessary.
djevanquaid Meditation is one of my favourite grounding exercises with particular focus on my breathing 😁
beckyjenkinsirl Ice pack/cold pack, petting my dog!
ismise_heather If I'm feeling anxious my therapist taught me to try to name five things I can see, four things I can touch, three things I can hear, two things I can smell, and one thing I can taste. Really helps to get you out of your head and back to your current surroundings/situation 😊 works well for me! x
sineadhealy3 Break the cycle of thought by putting on a song, dance your little socks off shaking all the nervous and negative energy away 🕺 Go outside and sit with nature, touch a tree or the ground. Take note of all the outdoor scents this amazing world has to offer 🌿 Breathe in for 4, hold for 4, out for 4, hold for 4 - 16 seconds, anyone has this in their day, repeat as much as you need to. This form of breathing helps override the sympathetic nervous system to rest and digest (telling your body you're safe). If you find meditating hard, breath work can be easier - focus on your breathe. Express yourself: sing, sigh scream - release the energy or light an incense stick to bring your focus out of your mind. Visualise the bad thoughts as buzzing bluebottles, acknowledge their in the room but then open the window to let them out 👋🏼 talk to someone - the weight that can lift is so powerful ❤️
lesley__nolan Walking bare foot in the grass.... smelling essential oils like lavender...... scanning your body from head to toe while breathing slowly and deeply into the belly......eating root vegetables.......massage/reflexology.......bath with Epsom salts.......mindful drawing/colouring........movement/dance/stretching........pulling weeds from the garden/planting plants 🪴😀
lucyvigne I've just started using meditations from the Plum Village app which is free ❤️
lauralougriffiths Hold my breath for 2 and then out for 5. Really helps me counting 10 things around me and naming them if im about to have a panic attack. Also touching something that has an unusual feel like something soft / furry etc so I focus on that
saffyburke I find when I i feel I am becoming anxious having my phone in my hand sends me into a bad place twice as fast and its twice as hard to come out of so I find it best to put the phone down for however long it takes to feel like im not about to be sent into that place anymore, could be 5 minutes could be 5 hours 🤷🏼♀️ my phone is probably one of the main reasons I have anxiety attacks and the anxiety never starts with social media but it for sure gives it that last kick to send me over the edge 😬
cathzer breathe in through your nose for 5, hold... then out your mouth for 5. REPEAT until you feel a comfortable state resume
sam.travel a dumb one but i tuck my face into the top of my t-shirt and breathe in. it's a bit like hyperventilating into a bag i guess? helps to calm me.
soakbathsalts Focus on my breathe. Especially the breathing out part.
missgracetolan Go somewhere cold - outside in a T-shirt or inside where there are tiles and stand in bare feet
colinvjones Belly breathing; put hand on the belly and breathe in for 3, hold for 1 and out for 4
jodie13_ For me I definitely feel better once I get outside if possible. That and lots of cuddles with my dog! 😊🖤
oakhavenholistics I repeat “All is well, I am safe, I am grounded” & visualise roots coming from my feet & into the earth. Some essential oils are great too for grounding eg Sandlewood
relaxwithrach EMDR therapy has really helped me with my anxiety a huge amount. Also regular massage over the years has allowed me to learn to feel safe in my body, not always easy with anxiety. In terms of techniques; when I’m feeling anxious . . . clenched first breathing always helps me, squeezing my fists tightly when I inhale, then releasing them on the exhale. This is particularly helpful so I don’t feel under pressure to do deep breathing when I’m not always able to. Being able to name it, saying out loud to someone “I’m feeling anxious” helps to alleviate some of the build up too.
tmferrari1 Self talk - out loud. Hearing your own voice makes it more tangible.
emkcc This is a great idea 🤍 Breathing exercise can sometimes help - breathe in for 4 seconds, hold for 4, breathe out for 4. In the evening, if you have trouble sleeping, write down what’s troubling you and then put that page/notebook away. This really helps to settle thoughts & ease your mind if you have a lot going on.
yourmasnanny Positive self talk. And talking to yourself as if you are a close friend, “Calm down. You are okay. You will be okay. This feeling is temporary. You are strong and you CAN handle this even if it doesn’t feel like you can”
danny.mclaughlin.tcm I have found its something I have built upon with experience. If it scares me and makes me anxious I make a conscious effort to do it. Presentations, smalltalk, skydives. Big or little if I find it terrifies me I make a point to do it and over time through experience the anxiety lessens as you know you've done it before and can do it again.
evieannajane Repeating the word stop three times after each negative thought.
colleileen Also it’s always good to remind yourself that life has a way of turning around situations even if there scary the usually change over time
eilypoo Self Havening ('wash' face, 'hug/rub' upper arms, rub palms, in a loop) while repeating positive affirmations aloud, eg "I am safe, I am supported, I am healthy", etc.