The Power of Grounding
“Touch your soles with the soul of this Earth and feel her magic”
Many of us spend the majority of our time indoors, separated from the earth by layers of concrete, wood, and synthetic materials. This lifestyle leads to a ‘grounding deficiency.’ However, it is easily remedied by a grounding practice, but first we need to be able to identify when we are ungrounded. Below are five signs to look for.
You are ungrounded when:
- Your mind is racing and can’t focus on what you need to do.
- You are easily distracted and avoid tasks and looping thoughts.
- You are tired yet wired at the same time.
- You find it difficult to complete projects and you jump from one thing to another.
- You feel restless and discontent with your surroundings, yourself, and the people around you.
If you are experiencing any of these signs you are not alone. Everyone becomes ungrounded at times. It is not a matter of if, but when.
How We Become Ungrounded?
As humans we are electrical beings. Our bodies have electrons. However, free radicals steal our electrons and disrupt our electrical system. Free radicals come from pollution, smoke, pesticides, fried food, and radiation. We spend hours bathing in electromagnetic fields (EMFs) from electronic devices, cell phones, and laptops causing us to be ungrounded.
What is Grounding?
Grounding focuses on realigning your electrical energy by touching the ground barefoot. The Earth’s surface carries electrons so when we make direct skin contact with it, electrons flow into our bodies and spreads throughout the tissues. The grounding process neutralizes free radicals. Nobel Prize winner Richard Feynman discovered that, when grounded, our body becomes an extension of the Earth’s gigantic electric system and a “working agent that cancels, reduces, or pushes away electric fields from the body.”
Scientific Proven Benefits
The scientific research in “Earthing: Health Implications of Reconnecting the Human Body to the Earth’s Surface Electrons” (Journal of Environmental and Public Health January 12, 2012, Page 1) showed that the anti-inflammatory effects of grounding through the transfer of electrons improved human health. Benefits included improved immune function, improved circulation, increased energy, better sleep, pain and stress relief, and faster workout recovery.
Grounding is not some “new age” fad. It’s found in Ayurvedic teachings from over 5,000 years ago. Traditional Chinese medicine, which is over 2,500 years old, practices earthing or grounding qi to balance and harmonize the body’s energy. “For the most part, Native Americans of the southern regions and the temperate regions of the north preferred to go barefoot, even in the snow.” – Encyclopedia.com
Grounding and Coherent Brainwaves
The electromagnetic field of the earth is 7.8 Hz which is also the same as the brainwave frequency of alpha-theta, which is known as the flow state. This allows us to function at optimum efficiency and coherence. These brainwaves are associated with insight, intuition, and inner peace. As a matter of fact, Steve Jobs, founder of Apple, was known for walking barefoot at school, work, and many of his meetings. He believed his most creative ideas arrived when walking barefoot. Considering how the world is forever changed by his contributions, he might have been onto something.
The Brain Waves of Healers
For a decade, Robert Beck researched the brain wave activity of healers from all cultures and religious backgrounds. He enumerates psychics, shamans, dowsers, Christian healers, seers, ESP readers, kahuna, Santeria, Wicca practitioners, and others. Independent of their belief systems, each exhibited ‘nearly identical EEG signatures’ during their ‘healing’ moments. The 7.8-8Hz alpha-theta brainwaves lasted from one to several seconds and synchronized with the earth’s geoelectric micropulsations. – Lian Sidorov
As a child, I was happiest during summers and weekends when I played barefoot outside. When indoors for too long, I became either agitated or depressed. Years later, when I adopted a vegan lifestyle, family members called me a “hippie tree hugger.” I didn’t understand why people hugged trees. I lacked understanding and judged it as something only “weirdos” did. I swept it out of my mind. However, this topic continued to be brought to my attention.
For example, a nature-loving friend of mine told me a story of a grounding practice used when kids were misbehaving. Whenever children acted out with hyperactive and disruptive behavior, they were instructed to go outside, dig a hole, and fill it up with water. They were to sit with their feet in the muddy water for twenty minutes or so. This calmed them down and their behavior improved.
After performing massages on certain clients, I experienced dizziness and an “off” feeling. I asked my instructor why this was happening and what I needed to do about it. She asked me if I wore shoes while working. I did. She advised me to ground myself mentally and physically. It worked.
This subject arose yet again, years later when my daughter watched Earthing and Grounding. She told me the films were fascinating, but it wasn’t until I underwent healing CPTSD (Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) that I truly understood just how powerful grounding was.
Brain Waves For Healing Trauma and Mental Health
In order to heal traumatic memories, we need to be in alpha-theta brainwaves. In theta, memories can safely resurface. In alpha, the memories can be processed. The Earth’s pulse falls precisely where the alpha and theta brain waves meet. Grounding acts as a master entrainment signal that synchronizes the frequencies of the heart, brain, and emotions. This coherent state reverses hyperarousal patterns, so inner conflicts are resolved and well-being is re-established.
In his YouTube video “About grounding and why I don’t wear shoes anymore. We are electrical beings.” Adrian Kuiper demonstrates the difference in energy levels when grounded and ungrounded using a voltmeter. The device has two wires with pins at the end, one red, and one black. The black pin goes into the ground and he holds the red pin in his hand. Now, while wearing shoes, the voltmeter reads about 1 volt. However, when he takes off his shoes and stands barefoot, the voltmeter reading increases to 55-65 volts demonstrating a dramatic difference.
When to Ground
Ground after emotionally charged situations, at work, school, or in personal relationships. When you’re stressed and overwhelmed, it helps regain focus and composure and helps you feel more stable and present. Ground after using electronic devices because it creates electrical coherence in the brain and body. Ground after traveling because it helps readjust your body to overcome jet lag. Grounding is great before meditation because it enhances its effectiveness. It’s also excellent to do before sleep as it improves the quality of rest.
The Difference Between Grounding and Earthing
These are similar and yet different. Earthing is being connected via direct barefoot contact and grounding is being connected via grounding wires or products such as mats, shoes, and pads.
How to Ground
When you are outdoors walk barefoot on grass, soil, or sand. Swim in the ocean, soak in mineral hot springs, or play in a saltwater pool. When you are indoors, consider using grounding products such as mats, sheets, blankets, and grounding socks. You can even make your own grounding shoes. Go the extra mile, by creating an electronic-free bedroom. We spend many hours in our bedroom sleeping. It’s a great idea to reduce electrical interference from electric blankets and heaters, fluorescent lights, light dimmers, cell phones, computers, televisions, transformers, and Wi-Fi modems. If that doesn’t work for you, simply purchase an EMF bed canopy that is made from a fabric that shields against electromagnetic frequencies.
Understanding the power of grounding has deepened my love for the outdoors and provided me with the scientific answers to why I am happiest in nature. It’s an essential part of my life. I incorporate it into my work routine by spending five minutes outside on the earth between work sessions. This gentle recharge provides me with stamina, while caffeine just can’t compete.
Take Inspired Action
Perform a grounding practice for the next thirty days by spending twenty minutes outside enjoying the sun and fresh air. See if you notice your mind becoming clearer, feeling more peaceful, and grounded in life.
Optimizing Your Energy
If you are experiencing low energy and are mentally exhausted, you can balance yourself by syncing your energy rhythms. Syncing the rhythms that apply to you allows for optimal energy, helping you become more effective and efficient in life. The three rhythms are infradian, circadian, and ultradian. We all run on circadian and ultradian rhythms, but if you are a woman who ovulates, you also have an infradian rhythm.
Three Signs of Being Out of Sync
- disrupted sleep, digestion, and mood
- inability to focus, mental exhaustion, and low energy
- confusion with changing mental, emotional, and physiological needs
Working against our natural rhythms imbalances our hormones leading to PMS, weight gain, and chronic ailments. Being out of sync can make us feel creatively stuck and miss out on our most productive timeframes. It also affects learning and retention. It leads to emotional dysregulation and strained relationships.
A circadian rhythm is the sleep-wake rhythm in a 24 hour cycle creating physical, mental, and behavioral changes.
Ultradian rhythms are rest-activity cycles that move throughout the day in 90-120-minute cycles. Physiological changes in heart rate, hormonal levels, muscle tension, and brain-wave activity all increase during the first part of the cycle—and so does alertness. Between 90-120 minutes the physiological measures decline signaling the body and mind to rest and recover.
The most well-known example of an infradian rhythm is the menstrual cycle in women which typically lasts around 28 days. This four part biological cycle impacts physical and mental health.
My Personal Story
I’ve been great with being in sync with my circadian rhythm, but I was not familiar with my infradian rhythms. I struggled trying to keep the same routine consistently day in and day out, over the course of the month. When I couldn’t, I thought something was wrong with me. Why can’t I keep it together? I tried to force myself to have energy when I didn’t. I struggled to go uphill when my body was designed to go downhill and vice versa. I assumed I wasn’t disciplined enough and felt ashamed. I was unaware of the energy that shifts over the course of the month. I thought I needed to just try harder but was unsuccessful. Knowing how to harness the energy of the four phases could have saved me so much time, energy, and unnecessary frustration.
Once I started working full-time, I noticed burnout and exhaustion at the end of a long day. Frequent breaks are not typically permitted in the American workplace. Breaks are short and few. Most people pushed through with caffeine.
As I learned about these three energy rhythms, I adjusted my lifestyle to work in harmony with my needs and experienced immediate results. For example, PMS and cramps disappeared. Instead of dreading my cycle, I fell in love with how the female body works and the gifts of each phase. When it came to my work, I was prepared for when I’d be the most creative, extroverted, or focused. I organized and batched out tasks best suited during certain times of the month. As a result, my productivity increased. I shared this information with the women in my life and they experienced great results as well. Here are three ways to start syncing now.
How to Sync Up with Your Infradian Rhythm
- Start by tracking your menstrual cycle to understand the length and timing of each phase (menstruation, follicular, ovulation, luteal).
- Observe how your energy levels, mood, and physical well-being vary during each phase.
- Design a routine that aligns with your energy levels and emotional state for each phase of your cycle. For example, in the menstruation phase, physical energy is decreased and rest is a priority. However, brain activity is higher allowing for enhanced processing of information. During the follicular phase, the brain is great at idea generation and planning but struggles with lengthy focus. The body performs peak cardiovascular abilities during this phase. In ovulation, communication and conflict resolution skills are enhanced while the body craves high-intensity exercise. In the luteal phase, the mind and body experience a long steady flow of energy ideal for the completion of tedious tasks, projects, and strength training.
- Be flexible and adapt your schedule as needed to accommodate your changing needs.
- Check out the book In the Flow by Alissa Vitti for more in-depth information about this topic.
How to Sync up with Your Circadian Rhythms
- Go to bed and wake the same time every day, even on weekends. Consistency helps regulate your body’s internal clock.
- During the day, spend time outdoors or open curtains to expose yourself to natural sunlight. Light exposure signals your body that it’s daytime and supports a healthy sleep-wake cycle.
- Limit the intake of caffeine and other stimulants in the hours leading up to bedtime, as they can interfere with your ability to fall asleep.
- Avoid long late-afternoon naps.
- Avoid intense exercise three hours before bedtime.
- Avoid heavy or spicy meals three hours before bedtime.
- In the evening and before bedtime, minimize exposure to electronic screens and bright artificial lights. These can disrupt your body’s production of the sleep hormone melatonin.
- Before bed, practice meditation, deep breathing, or gentle stretches to relax and promote better sleep.
- Keep your bedroom cool, dark, and quiet, and invest in a comfortable mattress and pillows.
How to Sync up with Your Ultradian Rhythms
Set a timer for 60-120 minutes. Notice how much time it takes before your concentration and energy begin to falter, signaling you’re hitting a low point in the ultradian rhythm.
- If your energy and concentration decrease before sixty minutes, use the Pomodoro method consisting of 25 minutes of activity followed by five minutes of rest. This is great for beginners. In time, energy and focus will increase. This method prevents burnout and maximum performance.
- If your energy and concentration decrease before ninety minutes, set the timer to take a ten-minute break every sixty minutes. This is the most commonly practiced method.
- If your energy and concentration are still going strong after ninety minutes, take a twenty-minute rest every two hours. Go for a short walk, nap, or simply close your eyes and focus on breathwork. The goal is to let your brain turn off.
Take Inspired Action
If this information resonates with you, consider syncing up your three energy rhythms. It will take practice to get familiar with tuning into your body’s rhythms, but you’ll enjoy how stable your energy levels become and how your concentration improves when you apply the methods above.
Years ago, I worked with a remarkable woman who had spent more than 28 years in a wheelchair. Her story was heart-wrenching; she had been a pedestrian hit by a drunk driver, causing severe damage to the entire left side of her body, including her arm, leg, ribs, intestines, and skull. Enduring numerous surgeries, even having ligaments in her fingers and toes clipped to uncurl them from the trauma. After nine months in a coma, she faced a life confined to a wheelchair and bed. My role was to provide massages to alleviate her pain.
As I massaged her week after week, I could sense her frustration. One day, I asked her, “What do you want?” Her response shattered my heart; she said, “I want to walk.” At that moment, I was 30 years old, and realized that she had spent almost my entire life in a wheelchair. While I, too, desired that for her, I didn’t know if it was possible.
Unexpectedly, I found myself saying, “I’ll help you walk. What do you want to do when you can walk?” She told me about her desire to go to the casino on her birthday, which had just passed. Determined to make her dream a reality, I promised her we would go next year, not in a wheelchair but walking. It was a spontaneous utterance, but I had an unexplained certainty in my heart.
My approach was to take it one step at a time, similar to how a baby learns to move. We started with her on the floor on her stomach, practicing lifting her head. Then, we worked on rolling over and eventually sitting upright. Gradually, her strength improved, little by little.
A year later, on her birthday, we went to the casino as promised. I assisted her as she walked to the car, sat in an actual seat, and stumbled into the casino. She played the slot machines until exhaustion, and that day, I cried in amazement. She showed me the incredible possibilities of the human body and mind. She begged to do the things we often take for granted. Her determination proved that healing is possible when you truly desire it. She taught me to cherish the ability to move, to walk. I hadn’t known if she would walk again, but I witnessed a miracle firsthand.
I documented some of her journey and you can see photos here: http://www.lifebylori.com/meet-drema/
We’re not meant to stay in a chronic state of pain weakness and disease. If we are patient and consistent, we can heal. Here are three ways you can start to heal your body.
- Start a daily 15-minute yoga practice and increase the time and intensity as you go.
- Book a massage at least once a month.
- Schedule physical therapy sessions twice a week (insurance often covers this).
Be patient and give yourself a year of consistent effort. If you are interested in doing yoga with me, feel free to let me know.
For those who seek more involvement in their healthcare decisions and want to explore alternative perspectives, the mind-body connection offers a worthwhile avenue. It appeals to individuals who desire self-awareness, self-empowerment, and the ability to tap into their innate healing abilities. By addressing the root causes of illness and adopting an active approach to health and well-being, this approach challenges the status quo and traditional medical model. It introduces new paradigms that provide a different understanding of disease and approaches to healing.
The mind-body connection refers to the relationship between a person’s mental and emotional state and their physical well-being. It emphasizes the interplay between emotional conflicts, biological processes, and disease manifestation. It recognizes that our thoughts, emotions, beliefs, and attitudes can influence our physical health, and vice versa.
Dr Bruce Lipton, Phd a cell biologist and author of Biology of Belief states, “Our minds are responsible for taking everything that we perceive in the external world and creating our own unique interpretation of it. This is the mind’s attempt to establish coherence between our internal beliefs and our external reality. Our bodies then respond to these perceptions by releasing chemicals that affect our physical health and well-being for better or for worse. Should our beliefs about the world and about ourselves be negative, the result is inevitably distress, disharmony, and disease in our bodies.”
Dr. Joe Dispenza, a leading authority on the subject of neuroplasticity and author of You Are the Placebo: Making Your Mind Matter breaks down the science behind how your thoughts can not only make you sick, but they can also make you well. A person’s belief can positively impact their physical healing. Research has shown that mindset, positive expectations, and belief systems can influence health outcomes.
Dr. Ryke Geerd Hamer developed testicular cancer in 1978, after the tragic loss of his son. The doctor believed that his cancer was a direct result of severe emotional shock he experienced. Once he resolved the emotional trauma his testicular cancer went into remission. His personal experience led him to develop German New Medicine, an alternative approach to understanding illness and healing, His studies show at the moment an unexpected trauma takes place the shock impacts a specific area in the brain causing a lesion that is clearly visible on a brain scan as a set of sharp concentric rings. With the impact, the affected brain cells communicate the disturbance to the corresponding organ.
Despite countless case studies of healing with the mind body connection there are several challenges individuals may face in their journey. Here are some common problems people may encounter when seeking to use the mind-body connection:
- Lack of Awareness: Many people are unaware of the mind-body connection or underestimate its significance. They may not realize the impact that thoughts, emotions, and beliefs can have on their physical health. Raising awareness and understanding about the mind-body connection is an initial challenge.
- Skepticism and Stigma: Some individuals may be skeptical about the effectiveness of mind-body practices or view them as “woo-woo” or pseudoscience. Skepticism can create barriers for individuals who want to explore the mind-body connection, as they may face criticism or lack of support from others.
- Limited Resources and Access: Access to quality resources, training, and practitioners specializing in mind-body practices can be limited in certain areas. This can make it challenging for individuals to find reliable guidance or support in incorporating mind-body techniques into their healing journey.
- Time and Commitment: Integrating mind-body practices into one’s lifestyle requires time, commitment, and consistency. Establishing new habits and dedicating time for practices such as meditation or engaging in therapeutic modalities can be challenging in our fast-paced, busy lives.
- Emotional Resistance or Trauma: Some individuals may have emotional resistance or unresolved trauma that makes it difficult to fully engage with the mind-body connection. Past traumas or deep-seated emotional issues can hinder the ability to connect with and effectively use the mind-body approach for healing.
- Integration with Conventional Medicine: Integrating the mind-body connection with conventional medical treatments can be a challenge. Some individuals may face resistance from healthcare providers who are not familiar with or open to incorporating mind-body practices into treatment plans. Finding a balance and collaboration between different approaches can be key.
- Self-discipline and Consistency: Practicing mind-body techniques requires self-discipline and consistency. It can be challenging for individuals to maintain regular practice, especially during stressful times or when immediate results may not be apparent.
Despite these challenges, many individuals find that the benefits of the mind-body connection outweigh the difficulties they encounter. Seeking support from knowledgeable practitioners, joining support groups or communities, and persistently exploring and practicing mind-body techniques can help overcome these challenges and reap the rewards of mind-body healing.
Here are five recommended books and resources that provide valuable insights into the mind-body connection:
- The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel van der Kolk: This book explores the profound impact of trauma on the body and mind, offering understanding and techniques for healing.
- You Are the Placebo: Making Your Mind Matter by Dr. Joe Dispenza: Dr. Dispenza explores the power of our thoughts and beliefs in influencing our health, providing practical guidance on using the mind-body connection for healing.
- Biology of Belief by Dr. Bruce Lipton: This book delves into the relationship between our beliefs, the mind, and cellular biology, shedding light on the power of our thoughts and perceptions to shape our health.
- You Can Heal Your Life by Louise Hay: Louise Hay’s classic book guides readers on a journey of self-discovery and healing, emphasizing the mind-body connection and the power of positive affirmations.
- German New Medicine by Dr. Ryke Geerd Hamer: This resource provides an introduction to the concepts and theories associated with German New Medicine, offering a different perspective on the mind-body connection and disease.
These books and resources offer valuable insights and perspectives on understanding the mind-body connection and its implications for health and well-being. They can serve as a starting point for those interested in exploring this fascinating field further.
I hope you enjoyed this post. If you have experiences with the mind body connection, please share your story with me.
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3 Ways to Process Negative Emotions
Welcome to my 11-part series of How to Transform Your Life where I share my favorite tools and resources that I implemented and improved my life with. Today is the fourth transformational tip on processing negative emotions. Enjoy!
Unresolved inner conflicts impact our health, career, and relationships. This robs us of enjoying our lives. If you are triggered, agitated, or apathetic, and depressed it could be from holding onto unprocessed painful experiences. This prolonged suffering is reflected in the body as explained by Bessel van der Kolk in the book, The Body Keeps the Score.
I realized I was an emotional hoarder of wounds after my body went into sudden cardiac arrest from buried away resentments and disappointments from decades before. There are five major wounds and fears: abandonment, betrayal, humiliation, injustice, and rejection. Not knowing how to process pain, I told myself to “get over it.” or denied being upset, or minimized my experience by saying it wasn’t that bad. I didn’t know there were methods to release it. Doesn’t time heal? When a similar situation arose it triggered me to believe another negative situation reminiscent of the past would occur and my body would have a visceral reaction.
Studies have shown we do not emotionally develop beyond the age of unresolved conflicts. Mark Oliver, explains in the book The Four Intelligences most people in the United States don’t emotionally mature past the age of eight. This explains why a grown adult can go into a fit and act childlike.
In nature, when an animal is in a dangerous and stressful state, its heart races, cortisol, adrenalin, and norepinephrine flood the body. Once out of danger, the animal has the capacity to return back to homeostasis within ninety seconds. Dr. Joe Dispenza states humans have the same capacity. When we hold onto the stress long after the experience has occurred it is possible we are addicted to those hormonal states. The good news is addiction can be overcome by processing negative emotions as a daily practice.
Imagine the light feeling of prioritizing emotional well-being by clearing out negative experiences. Do this in a safe quiet space, when alone and uninterrupted, between thirty and ninety minutes. The three great resources listed below help process negative emotions.
Emotional Map from Making Love Work by Barbara De’Angelis
This method includes writing or speaking out loud and expressing emotions in the following six steps. Each level breaks down the negative charge and leads into the next level where all emotions are resolved.
- Anger, resentment, and blame
- Hurt, sadness, and disappointment
- Fears, insecurities, and wounds
- Regrets, understanding, and responsibility
- Wishes, intentions, and solutions
- Love, appreciation, and forgiveness
The Work by Byron Katie
The first step of this process is to fill out a Judge Your Neighbor worksheet where you answer six questions about the triggering experience. Then there are four questions to reflect on and then a turnaround. Byron Katie hosts a weekly podcast, At Home with Byron Katie demonstrating this powerful and transformative process.
A Hawaiian spiritual practice used to clean energy by reciting four sentences. This method is popularized by the story of Dr. Hew Len, a clinical psychologist who worked with the developmentally disabled and the criminally mentally ill and their families. He didn’t treat the patients instead he applied the following steps towards himself stating that when the data is clear within it ceases to be expressed in those around you. This method was so radical that the patients healed and the mental institution was closed.
- I am sorry.
- Please forgive me.
- Thank you.
- I love you.
The process is complete when you feel lighter, more loving, and at peace with the past. The inner conflict is resolved and all that is left is a sense of gratitude. There is power in seeing things anew, gaining insights, and inspiring a change in responses and behaviors.
Everyone deserves to experience a rewarding and fulfilling life. Take the time to clean up and process emotional wounds. It may be exhausting as memories surface to grieve, but the body will heal and so will your emotional resilience.