Following on from the post a couple of weeks ago, I’m exploring what it means to be feeling centred or grounded this week. And, how to achieve it; this article includes four easy ways to feel centred.
What does it mean?
I guess it might depend on the context of the word? Does it mean a physical thing? Or, perhaps spiritual? Or, maybe emotional? Maybe all three at once? It’s that feeling of being safe and secure; that nothing can wobble you off your spot. That even in life’s storms, you can find your way forward. Being completely in the present with complete awareness. Feeling whole, integrated and connected being in control emotionally and physically. One of my favourite quotes about it is by Rupi Kaur who is a Canadian poet. She says;
“it was when I stopped searching for home within others and lifted the foundations of home within myself I found there were no roots more intimate than those between a mind and body that have decided to be whole.”
What do you think? I love the feeling of certainty, safety and security that I read. Of course, it’s going to mean different things to different people, but there’s no doubt that we’re more able to live the life we want if we’re centred. I have met with many clients who have worked on this aspect and, even though their life is far from ‘perfect’, they describe a feeling of being able to cope with anything, be creative and loving. It’s certainly what’s got me through some tough times in my life.
How do we get there?
The all important question!! Well, many roads lead to Rome (I know, Alain de Lille said that ‘All’ roads lead there, but I think we have to build in a degree of flexibility!) Flexibility is important as what will work for me won’t work for you etc. For me, practicing yoga regularly is the most reliable way I know to become and stay centred. Because yoga isn’t just about practicing asanas, it’s a way of life, it really speaks to me.
There are other ways – here are a few;
- practicing mindfulness – not necessarily ‘omming’ your way to centre (tho this is great) but simply focusing on your surroundings. A brilliant way to come back to centre if you’re feeling anxious or stressed is to say out loud 5 things you can see, 4 things you can hear and 3 things you can smell. Really focusing your brain with your senses is a vey quick and easy way to help it begin to produce more feel good chemicals rather than stress ones.
- getting moving can help too. Not necessarily running a marathon or embarking on a gym membership, but perhaps going for a walk and noticing nature. Getting into a rythmn really helps your body’s parasympathetic nervous system kick in, reducing stress levels and bringing you to rest and relax.
- the breath – if you subscribe to my newsletter, we’ve covered using the breath before. Let me know if you’d like a copy. In the meantime, sitting comfortably but fairly upright and stable, breathe in through your nose for a count of four, focusing your breath into your belly first before it gets anywhere else. Then sigh out through your mouth for a count of six with the air leaving your belly last. (I know it sounds a bit weird, but trust me!) Activating the vagus nerve, this breath pattern can also help the parasympathetic nervous system to do its thing.
- do a quick body survey – start at your head and just check in with each part of your body, noticing how it feels. Is it hot, tense, tight etc? If so, imagine it to be the opposite to see if it helps you feel better. Simply having something else to focus on helps to point your brain in a more helpful direction.
All of these will work when you’re feeling up against it, but how about pracitising these regularly so that you encourage your body to get familiar with this state? The more this can be your ‘norm’, the better balanced your body and mind will feel. And, when life does get a bit tricky, it’s going to find it easier to come back ‘home’.
How do you do it?
Everyone has their own way of achieving their sense of centredness. What’s your favourite? What have you found to be most successful? What’s your go to and which do you practice regularly? I’d love to hear them so I can share.
And, thank you to everyone who has got involved with conversations so far. Love hearing from you all and remember if you subscribe to the newsletter you get access to more free resources.