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  • Writer's pictureAdele@Grow2Be

Look for the calm within yourself

Sometimes life runs away with us. Wouldn't it be good if we just remembered to pause?

Can we nurture ourselves to be in the moment? Does it feel hard to stop? When we do, what do we notice? For some of us, it's that inner voice telling us to keep going, increasing pressure with never ending impossible demands; for others, that voice can be negative and unkind, constantly criticising and finding fault with anything we do. I've heard many times in therapy that there might be an avoidance to stop as it feels scary to be within ourselves, fearful of what the inner space may or may not reveal - this results in us trying to disconnect or dissociate from those feelings.

So, how do we deal with this inner struggle?

Grounding is a technique used in therapy to deal with the overwhelm that comes with experiencing those intense feelings. It's particularly helpful for those who have experienced PTSD, anxiety, panic and stressful situations. It focuses you to be present - to notice how your body is reacting to the distress it may be feeling and to help it regulate itself. There are many grounding methods available that work with your thinking, breathing and body awareness during stressful occasions or during times when you feel disconnected or depressed. The key is to find which ones work for you.

I find nature and being outdoors regulates my own emotional system. I wish I lived near a beach where I could kick away in water and collect pebbles! The next best thing for me is going for long walks in woodland or local parks with my dog. A while ago I was given a National Trust card as a birthday gift and I love going to various areas locally and nationally with my family.

My own grounding techniques involve me stopping at regular intervals to take deep breaths, allowing my muscles to relax and be present. I am aware of my senses particular what I see, touch, hear and smell and I really enjoy taking time to eat mindfully and relax whilst being outdoors. It's the perfect boost from the 'busyness' of life.

It took me time to find what worked for me in being grounded and mindful. Speaking to a counsellor or psychotherapist to look at ways to regulate emotions and be more present could be a positive and helpful step to feeling more present in life.

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