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How Grounding Can Help with Anxiety

Updated: May 22

By Rebecca Hall

Overview: Have you ever heard of grounding? Read on for a brief explanation of what grounding is and how it could help manage your anxiety and stress.

field of grass for grounding

How Grounding Helps with Feeling Unsteady

Have you ever ridden on a boat for awhile and when you went back on land it took a bit for you to not feel wobbly (to regain your “land legs”)? Or, after spending a day at an amusement park, maybe you still felt an echo of the movement of the rides even though you were sitting down or lying in bed? Have you ever stood on a bridge and felt the movement of it under your feet as cars rolled by?

The reason I describe these is because they all have something in common – once back on “solid” ground the wobbly feeling or lack of stability fades after a bit of time. When I think of emotional “grounding,” this is what I think of. Finding a way back to that solid feeling of mental safety and peace.

"Grounding” (in the emotional sense) simply means using an exercise or technique that helps a person to feel more calm and present in the here and now. These actions are very useful for many situations and circumstances and they can be simple and easy to remember.

Examples of When Grounding Could Be Useful:

Emotions Have Physical Effects

Building New Habits with Grounding:

Why To Use Grounding:

Grounding techniques or exercises are very helpful for calming us and helping us to feel better.

However, they don’t solve the underlying issues that could have caused us to feel overwhelmed by our emotions. For anyone feeling a lot of anxiety or other difficult emotions on most days I would recommend seeking further resources and help (such as therapy) in order to address what’s causing them. At times, we all need help and for anyone who is trying to struggle through a lot of worry and anxious thoughts most of the time – you don’t need to do it on your own. Both of these techniques can be done fairly quickly or you can take your time and do them for longer –

it’s totally up to you!

Grounding Exercise: Using the 5 Senses

This can be done anywhere, while sitting or standing comfortably. You can choose to move or not, but there’s no need to stay still like a statue! (For touch, you could move your hand to touch things or stay still and notice sensations without much movement.)

Look around and take a few moments to notice details around you using your 5 senses. Instead of

rushing, take a moment to note and consider:

5 things you can SEE

4 things you can TOUCH

3 things you can HEAR

2 things you can SMELL

1 thing you can TASTE

I love this exercise because it allows me to notice details and even to enjoy the variety of things that surround me. By practicing this on a regular basis you might also begin to notice interesting details even when you’re not doing this exercise. For example, you could be on a walk and hear sounds you hadn’t noticed before!

Grounding Exercise: Body Scan

For this exercise you will stay still, but you can be standing or sitting. Take a few moments (no need to rush!) to slowly “scan” through your body. You could start with your head and go to your feet or from your feet to your head. Things you can notice as you scan:

Notice each place where part of your body is touching another surface. What does it feel like?

Can you feel your shoes? Notice how they feel on your feet.

Notice the feel of your clothing on your skin, or the feel of the fabric of a blanket or your chair.

Notice if there is air flowing over your skin (for example a breeze or a fan blowing).

waterfall in the forest

Conclusion for Those Trying Grounding:

I hope you find these two exercises to be helpful. Grounding is such a simple but effective tool that can be used often for help in managing anxiety or stress.

“The earth is filled with His glory.” Isaiah 6:3

“If you get tired, learn to rest, not to quit.” Banksy

“...cling to what is good.” Romans 12:9

We’re Here to Help!

As I mentioned above, please seek out more help if you’d like to explore the sources of the experiences you have had with anxiety or stress (or other difficult emotions). Therapy allows a person to go deeper and to process various aspects of life with someone who is on your side and who is trained to help and challenge you in your growth and healing.

A message from our team of licensed therapists at Remain Connected Counseling:

As faith-based counselors serving the Atlanta area, it brings us immense joy to walk alongside individuals who are committed to finishing the race of life well. Regardless of where you find yourself on this journey, know that you are not alone. Your desire for healing is both valid and achievable. It is never too late to heal. It is NEVER too late for you. And God would never give up on you, so don't give up on yourself!

In conclusion, remember this: Your journey toward healing is a testament to your resilience and the unwavering love of a higher power. Embrace it, embrace yourself, and know that the best is yet to come.

Begin Working With A Therapist in Marietta, GA

Please consider reaching out to a qualified therapist. Our team of caring therapists would be honored to offer support with in-person and online services from our Marietta, GA-based practice. You can start your therapy journey by following these simple steps:

Other Services Offered at Remain Connected Counseling

Our team knows you may experience other issues in your life. This is why we are happy to offer a variety of services including teen therapyanxiety treatment, and EMDR therapy. In addition, we also offer life transitions therapy and depression counseling, and more all under a Christian counseling lens. By using online therapy, these services are available to anyone in Georgia. Learn more about our team of dedicated therapists and contact us for more information.


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