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Grounding: body, breath, saliva, imagination

– to mobilise your system and calm anxiety

The first part of the activity is the earth element, or grounding. Grounding is vital because we can’t breathe unless we’re grounded. You can use imagery to help you remember this, from around your home or workspace.

Take a seat with a back rest. Try to feel your body against the chair, feeling your feet against the floor, orientating yourself to your environment. This is grounding. 

Next, get in touch with your breath. Belly breathing works well here. You can also try straw breathing, which is when you breathe normally through the nose and breathe out as if you’re blowing out from the straw. The out breath is directly linked to the parasympathetic nervous system and slows down the heart. 

After that, activate your saliva. So having a drink to hand or something to eat or gently biting down on the sides of your tongue can help to activate your saliva. 

And finally introduce your imagination – bringing in a safe place, a place of comfort, a place of connection, where you can feel safe and at one with the world. 

We’ve brought all of these four elements together as a supportive resource. This can be done relatively quickly, and it can become a repeated, learned exercise at your fingertips for when you feel anxiety is going to start to overwhelm your system and, instead, help to mobilise your system.