Techniques For Getting Present
You all know how I harp on the benefits/power of being grounded, and I know that some of you desire a quick and easy way to do it. Especially because you can start the day grounded, and then something comes up that knocks you out. We all have ways we dissociate or go unconscious to what’s in front of us, so these techniques will bring you back into your body.
Some of us learn best with visuals, some through auditory means, and some through feeling. We’re all a combination of each, but most people tend to have one or two ways that they prefer. Finding out your way is extremely beneficial because then you’ll know how you best take in and comprehend information.
If you’re not sure, think about this: if I were giving you directions right now, would you understand best if I talked you through the way to go, or if I gave you visuals of what you’d pass? Also think about how much when you tell a story, you bring up how you felt in each moment. These are simplified ways to discover your preferences, but play with it and begin to notice where your strengths are.
That being said, here are techniques to appeal to each category:
Wherever you are, whatever’s going on, just take a moment to still yourself, and put your attention and focus on your body. Sit down, take a breath, and feel your legs sitting on the chair/couch. Really feel into the backs of your thighs being supported by the chair. Then take a moment to feel your back being supported by the chair. Keep breathing. Feel your feet on the ground. Take your time and feel these areas.
That in and of itself, taking those moments to feel into your body and to feel what you’re sitting on, can bring you into immediate presence. Feeling your feet and the base of your spine supported by the chair, brings focus to your first chakra which is all about safety and security.
Stop where you are and sit still for a moment. Then listen to the sounds around you. Really focus on the sounds that you hear. After doing that for 30 seconds to a minute, focus on the silence between the sounds. Now I know that sounds crazy, and you’re probably wondering how you focus on the silence between sounds, but don’t try to figure it out, get out of your thinking mind, and just put your focus on the space between the sounds. It’s not that you stop hearing the sounds, it’s that your focus moves to the space around the sounds.
Do that for 30 seconds to a minute. And then focus on any sounds again.
Again, this gets you remarkably present to what’s happening around you, and it gets you into your body.
Most times, I combine the two above: I’ll feel into my body, and then I’ll listen to the sounds. When I used to act, my acting teacher Stuart Rogers was the one who taught these techniques to be used together. They’re incredibly effective.
Either sitting or standing, eyes opened or closed, imagine/visualize a thick root/tree trunk/cord going from your first chakra (base of spine) down to the center of the planet where it will anchor in. Then imagine roots going from your feet chakras down to the center of the planet. Release all the excess energy you’re holding- yours and others that you’ve picked up. Take a deep breath and on the exhale, blow the energy out, seeing it/letting it all go down that cord.
Now visualize all of your energy condensing into the center of your body, into that central channel that runs from the base of your spine to the top of your head. Call all of your energy and power back to you. As you do this, imagine yourself being held and supported by the earth.
Then visualize/imagine a thick violet (or other color) bubble around you that acts as a shield, to keep your energy in, and everyone else’s energies out, giving your space boundary. (There’s a guided meditation here if you have time and want a more thorough experience. And here is a blog on taking your power back.)
Even if you don't/can't visualize clearly, use the power of your imagination to bring it into being. This will anchor you into present time and bring you back to yourself
With all of the above techniques, it’s important to slow down and pay attention to your breathing. Focused breathing is a technique in and of itself. Notice if your breaths are shallow and if so, keep releasing what you’re worried about/holding onto, and try to get your breath deep into your abdomen. Keep going as long as you need.
My friend Sheva Carr, who is a Director at HeartMath, says to breathe slowly to the count of five and then exhale slowly to the count of five. It doesn't have to be five, especially if you're too stressed to breathe so slowly; as long as the inhale and exhale are at an even count. Not only does that get you present, but it gets you calm and centered.
There are many breathing techniques you can try, explore and see what works best for you.
We don’t live in a bubble, neither are we perfect, so there will always be things that knock you out of balance. The important thing is, how quickly do you come back to center? Because the more present and empowered you are, the more you will make wise decisions, the more you will not be impacted by the negative energies around you, and the more you will react consciously as an adult, versus falling into childhood/adolescent patterns of behavior.
You have the power to shift your experiences throughout your day by your conscious presence. Choose to show up fully.
5/12/2021 01:26:39 pm
This was exactly what I needed today! I haven't felt very present, and reading through the options, the auditory one, combined with the feeling one, spoke to me. Usually I like visuals but lately I need to feel. Something about feeling and listening to sounds popped me right into my body. I will keep this reminder starred so I can refer back. Thank you!
5/13/2021 06:04:50 pm
Hi Dot! Oh I’m so glad it was helpful and gave you answers!! Thank you for letting me know! xo
5/17/2021 09:14:02 pm
This was GREAT!! I had no idea how helpful it would be to combine visual and feeling. A friend taught me a particular visualization for grounding, but FEELING it at the same time -- which I've never done until I read this(!!!) -- totally brought it to life.
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Me, Tina Germain, just sharing ways to make you the best you can be!