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With Covid-19 on the rampage everything is in turmoil right now. Kids are home from school, people are unable to work, and of course the illness itself is anxiety inducing to say the least!
In an ever changing world our biggest challenge can often be staying grounded through the upheaval. Here are a few techniques that help me stay grounded amidst the chaos.
Controlling your breathing can help to control your mind. By focusing on deliberate breathing you can force your thoughts to slow down.
If you catch yourself feeling wound up during the day focus on breathing in deeply for four seconds, hold it for two seconds, then exhale for four seconds. Hold for another two seconds before inhaling, and repeat as many times as you need to begin feeling the tension melt away.
Night time is often when it is most difficult to get my brain to shut off. When I am in bed I lay flat on my back and do an extreme deep breathing exercise.
In this exercise you focus on very slowly letting air leak into your lungs filling them from the bottom to the top. Imagine a warm calming energy flowing into your lungs life water fills a glass.
Once your lungs are filled slowly empty them in the same way, from bottom to top. I like to breathe in through my nose and out form my mouth. You can do whatever is comforable for you.
Another breathing technique I love is lions breath. This is a yoga technique. Breathe in deeply then huff it all out as forcefully as you can while opening your eyes wide, extending your fingers and arms, and sticking out your tongue.
I personally can’t do lion’s breath without laughing, and that is half of why it is so therapeutic! I also imagine myself exhaling black clouds of negativity as I exhale. Lion’s breathe can also increase energy and confidence.
You can get my free printable of these and a few other breathing techniques in the Resource Library.
When most people think of meditation they probably imagine a dark room, soft music, and at least thirty minutes of stillness. While this type of meditation is GREAT you can also get a lot of the benefits with a much shorter practice.
Even a quick five minute moment of meditation can help you to quiet your racing thoughts. For meditation most often takes the form of daily mindfulness.
It is nice, however, to do a longer meditation on occasion. One of my favorite resources for meditations is the app “Calm- Meditation and Sleep Stories”.
5 Senses Grounding Kit
One simple way to calm anxiety and even panic attacks is to engage your five senses. You can do this anywhere by observing and naming things around you that you can see, touch, smell, hear, or taste.
You can also create an “emergency kit” to be used in stressful moments. I keep a few of my kit items in my purse for out and about, and the rest live on a shelf next to my bed.
In your kit you want to put a few things for each sense. For example I have some chocolate (taste, touch and smell), essential oils (smell, touch), bubble wrap (touch, sound), noise blocking headphones + favorite music (sound), and pop rocks (taste, sound). I’ve got a full list of ideas for every sense, as well as a few other miscellaneous tips here.
Emotional Freedom Technique-Tapping
EFT or Tapping is a process where you tap on certain energy meridian points throughout your upper body while repeating a word, phrase, or script. It can help you heal both physical and mental issues.
Check out this video from The Tapping Solution for a good breakdown of what tapping is and how it can be used.
OK, I’ll be honest, I thought this technique was a load of crazy when I first heard about it. I was blown away by how well it works.
I was at the Determined to Rise Retreat where Misti Gale was speaking. She guided us through the basics of tapping then told us to pick our own “I am…” phrase to tap.
I chose the phrase “I am POWERFUL”. As I tapped through this phrase I felt an overwhelming release of emotion and started to cry. Then I heard and felt my upper back, which was nearly constantly in pain, pop and straighten. The woman next to me looked over because the pop was so loud she heard it to!
My back pain has been significantly reduced to the point of almost not existing now that I know how to tap through the emotions stored there. If you want to learn more about how the body stores emotions check out the books “Feelings Buried Alive never Die“, and “The Body Keeps the Score“.
I have paper journals and have also just been getting into digital journaling using the Goodnotes and Procreate apps on my iPad. I also keep a few different scripture, journaling/planner, and art Pinterest boards for inspiration.
I hope these tips help you find some peace in turbulent times. I would love to hear how they work out for you, or any other tips you have to share. Just drop them in the comments below!