In the stressful world that constantly feels like an unrelenting storm, having knowledge of grounding techniques for anxiety can be a life saver. Every individual has to fulfil responsibilities, deadlines and challenges which can leave a person feeling overwhelmed. In this article we’ll discuss the grounding techniques that can help you find a balance and sense of calmness while doing the most difficult tasks. These techniques will be backed up with research and statistics to empower you on your journey to find control and serenity.
What Is Anxiety?
Before we get to know what the grounding techniques for anxiety are, we need to understand what anxiety is. So, anxiety is defined as the natural response to stress. However, when the anxiety becomes uncontrollable and out of control it can negatively impact the confidence of anyone.
According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), it is the most common mental illness which affects millions of people. Therefore, there needs to be an immediate coping mechanism to control it.
Diving Into The Powerful Grounding Techniques for Anxiety:
Grounding techniques for anxiety are the techniques which help you divert your attention from thoughts making you anxious in the first place. These techniques are helpful for anyone of any age. They’re simple yet really effective. Therefore, they include:
1. Taking deep breaths:
One of the easiest and simplest techniques is to take deep breaths. Taking slow and deep breaths activates the relaxation response of the body which calms the nervous system. For instance, here’s how to do it:
- While counting till six, inhale slowly through your nostrils.
- Then count to four while holding your breath.
- Then slowly exhale through the mouth while counting till six.
Repeat this process several times while keeping the rhythm constant. This technique not only helps you control your anxiety but also helps in your overall health.
2. Grounding yourself using your five senses:
Usually, referred to as the 5-4-3-2-1 technique, it helps to calm yourself in the present moment. This method involves:
- Name 5 things that you see around you.
- List 4 things you can touch or feel.
- Identify 3 things you can hear.
- Name 2 things you can smell.
- Recognize 1 thing you can taste.
By indulging into your sensory perception, you can shift your focus from anxiety towards the environment immediately.
3. Progressively relaxing your muscles:
It is one of the effective grounding techniques for anxiety. Progressively relaxing your muscles involves systemically relaxing and tensing different muscles of your body. This helps relieve the physical tension the is linked to anxiety. For instance, you can follow this routine:
Progressive muscle relaxation (PMR) is a relaxation technique that involves systematically tensing and then relaxing different muscle groups in your body to reduce tension and anxiety. It’s a simple and effective method for promoting relaxation and can be done in a quiet, comfortable space. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to practice progressive muscle relaxation:
- First of all, find a Quiet Space:
Find a quiet and comfortable place where there is no disturbance and any sort of unnecessary noises. Afterwards, sit or lie down in a relaxed state.
- Begin taking slow and deep breaths:
Take a few deep and slow breaths to relax for further exercise.
- Start Relaxing your other body part such as:
- Curl your toes tightly for 5-10 seconds and then release.
- Then point your toes upwards, flex your calves and shins for 5-10 seconds, then release.
- Meanwhile tighten your thigh muscles by pressing your knees together for 5-10 seconds and then release.
- Then tighten your abdominal muscles by sucking in your stomach for 5-10 seconds and releasing it afterwards.
- Raise your shoulders backwards in the direction of your ears for 5-10 seconds. Then drop them drop and relax.
- Clench your fists tightly for 5-10 seconds and then open them to release the pressure.
- Squeeze your facial muscles by closing your eyes and clenching your jaw for 5-10 seconds.
Repeat this process several times by maintaining a steady breathing pattern. As you follow this procedure make sure to empty your mind of any thoughts that are making you feel anxious.
4. Doing Meditation:
Meditation has proven to be a very well practice to reduce anxiety and stress. It is a skill that requires practice to master. It involves willful and non-judgmental attention and concentration to your environment. Even if you do a few minutes of mindful meditation per day it can help you reduce anxiety to a great extent.
However, sometimes the mind can wander off even when meditating. But it is not something to worry about because every time you bring your mind back to your point of concentration, you’re strengthening your mind.
5. Doing Music Therapy:
Music has a significant impact on us and our emotions. Research published in the “Journal of Behavioral Medicine” shows that listening to music can reduce anxiety and stress. By creating playlists that sooth and calm your mind. This type of music can help you feel less anxious. You can experiment with different genres and instruments to find what resonates with you personally.
6. Making Journals for Self-Reflection:
Keeping a journal is very therapeutic, it can help you process your thoughts and emotions more effectively. When you put your emotions on a piece of paper, it gives you a perspective and clarity about what triggers your anxiety. It also serves as a record of the progress you’ve made in order to control and manage your anxiety. When you reflect back on all the entries it gives you an insight of how far you’ve come in your journey to finding calmness amidst chaos.
7. Exposing yourself to nature to reduce stress and anxiety:
If you find peace in spending time in nature, then gradually expose yourself to it. Start by taking short walks in any park near you. Research published in scientific reports suggests that spending at least 120 minutes in the nature every week can improve your well-being. For this reason, when you go out in nature it helps you find something majestic to concentrate your mind you. Nature has a grounding effect on people which allows you to connect with beauty and find serenity outdoors. Therefore, whenever you are feeling stressed try to focus on the particular element of nature that relaxes your mind.
8. Seeking social support as a means of grounding techniques for anxiety:
Human connection is a potent antidote against anxiety. When you spend time with your loved ones and share your feelings with them, it helps to reduce your anxiety. According to research published in the journal “Psychological Medicine” having a strong social support network can help lower depression and anxiety. Never hesitate to ask your peers and family for support whenever you’re going through stressful and anxious moments.
9. Grounding affirmations and Self compassion Practices:
Affirmation are the positive statements that you repeat to yourself to boost your confidence. It helps you to get rid of any negative or self-sabotaging thoughts. In the same way self-compassion is treating yourself with the same love and affection that you would give to a friend or peer. These practices promote self-acceptance and help center your mind in managing anxiety in the longer run.
10. Aromatherapy and Chromotherapy:
Some oils such as rosemary, lavender, and chamomile are shown to have relaxing effects on the body. These essential oils can be used in various ways like as diffusers, directly applying to the skin with an oil carrier or putting a few drops in your bath. Their soothing aroma helps to reduce anxiety and creates a sense of calmness.
Whereas color therapy, also called chromotherapy, is based on the idea that different colors have different impact on our emotions. For instance, blue is generally associated with calmness and yellow is regarded as optimistic and full of energy. So, if you’re going to an interview prefer to wear a color that makes you feel more comfortable and relaxed. You can also decorate your house with your comfortable colors, so you don’t feel relaxed around them.
11. Using Herbal Remedies as grounding techniques for anxiety:
There are various herbs that have a calming effect on the body. Chamomile tea has certain chemical compounds that have calming effect on the nervous system. Also, Valerian root also has anxiety reducing properties. After consulting with a healthcare provider these herbs can be used to reduce stress.
12. Seeking Professional help:
Sometimes a point can come where no other technique seems to be working. If the anxiety reaches to a point that starts affecting your daily life it is strongly advised to seek professional help. Medical professionals like psychiatrists and therapists can help you find the best treatment in order to control anxiety and stress. They can either give you treatment like cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) or prescribe you medication if necessary.
This world is filled with uncertainty and we’re completely unsure of what lies ahead at any moment. So, the grounding techniques for anxiety help us to give a controlled and poised response in any situation. These techniques help you in mastering to control your stress and anxiety so can find a lifelong tranquility. In brief, with determination, right grounding techniques and professional help anyone can find their calmness amidst any chaos.